Gunman kills 4, then himself, after Mass at Brazil cathedral
RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) — A man opened fire in a cathedral in southern Brazil after Mass today, killing four and leaving four others injured before taking a bullet in the ribs in a firefight with police and then shooting himself in the head, authorities said.
The mass shooting, a rarity in Latin America's largest nation, happened right after the midday service had ended at the Metropolitan Cathedral in Campinas, a city about 60 miles north of Sao Paulo.
"It's so sad," said Wilson Cassante, a press officer with the archdiocese. "It's hard to imagine the pain this has caused."
Hours after paramedics were seen taking bodies and injured out of the church, authorities identified the shooter as 49-year-old Euler Fernando Grandolpho of Valinhos, a nearby city in the densely populated state of Sao Paulo.
Grandolpho, a systems analyst, was not a member of the church, authorities said. According to public records, Grandolpho had held various jobs with government entities, including a stint as an assistant to the prosecutor in the public ministry in Sao Paulo.
Authorities said they had not identified a motive. A backpack found near the dead gunman had his identification but no note or other clues, police investigator Jose Henrique Ventura told reporters outside the church. "Thanks to the intervention of police, something much bigger was avoided," said Ventura, adding that the four injured were in stable condition.