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Shooting Reported at Church in Charleston, South Carolina

Wednesday, 17 Jun 2015 11:40 PM

 A gunman opened fire on Wednesday evening at a historic African-American church in downtown Charleston, South Carolina, and was still at large, a police official said, following a media report that as many as eight people may have been shot.

Late Wednesday, several news organizations were reporting multiple bodies still in the church.

Local pastor Thomas Dixon told CNN around 11.30pm that the scene was 'very bad.'

'Apparently the person just entered the church and opened fire. That part has not been fully articulated on what happened yet ... they are still looking for the suspect,' he said.

Police described the suspect as a 21-year-old white man in a sweatshirt or hoodie and jeans, according to Charleston newspaper The Post and Courier. It cited unconfirmed reports that as many as eight people may have been hit by gunfire.

Charleston Police Department spokesman Charles Francis said the shooting occurred at the Emanuel AME Church around 9 p.m. local time.

He said police were still searching for a suspect, and he had no information on victims. Further details were not immediately available.

North Carolina television station WGHP, a Fox affiliate, reported on its website that some of the victims may have died.

Local broadcaster WCSC reported that the FBI was on the scene. The FBI could not be immediately reached to comment.

The website for the church said it has one of the largest and oldest black congregations in the region.

The church was built in 1891 and is considered a historically significant building, according to the National Park Service.

© 2017 Thomson/Reuters. All rights reserved.

 
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A gunman opened fire on Wednesday evening at a historic African-American church in downtown Charleston, South Carolina, and was still at large, a police official said, following a media report that as many as eight people may have been shot. Police described the suspect as...
shooting, church, south, carolina
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2015-40-17
Wednesday, 17 Jun 2015 11:40 PM
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