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Mormon bishop shot dead in California

From Greg Morrison, CNN
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Mormon bishop gunned down in church
  • The bishop is killed in a California church office
  • The suspect is killed in a gunfight with police
  • Unlike in some religious traditions, Mormon bishops lead individual churches

(CNN) -- A Mormon bishop was shot and killed in Visalia, California, on Sunday, police said.

The suspected gunman was killed later in the day in a gunfight with police, Visalia California Police Chief Colleen Mestas told CNN.

Bishop Clay Sannar, 42, was shot dead in an office at Visalia's Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Mestas said.

About 20 minutes after the shooting, police got a call from the suspect, who told them where he was heading, Mestas said.

Video: 911 call after bishop murder

Officers intercepted the suspect and a gunfight ensued, during which the suspect was killed.

Church members tell police the gunman was a stranger who hadn't been seen at the church before.

"I've got a dozen investigators trying to sort this out right now," Mestas said. "We've got to get some answers for his [Sannar] family."

Unlike in some religious traditions, Mormon bishops lead individual churches, not regions or groups of churches. Lexis Nexis Logo

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