Man shoots his father at Easter Sunday church service while screaming that it 'is the will of Allah'By Daily Mail Reporter
Witnesses say the 25-year-old man accused of walking into an Ohio church and fatally shooting his father after an Easter service Sunday was yelling about God and Allah after the killing.
Police say Reshad Riddle walked into the Hiawatha Church of God in Christ in Ashtabula and killed his father, 52-year-old Richard Riddle, with a single shot from a handgun Sunday afternoon.
Associate Pastor Sean Adams said Reshad then continued into the church, still holding the gun, and yelled that the killing was 'the will of Allah. This is the will of God.'
Making his case: Reshad Riddle made rambling comments about God and said he wanted to be treated fairly in Ashtabula Municipal Court on Monday
'It was terrifying,' Adams told the newspaper.
'The children were screaming and people were dialing 911. We were afraid to breathe.'
Reshad Riddle was quickly subdued by officers, who arrived just moments after the shooting. They say he has been mostly cooperative.
The Plain Dealer newspaper in Cleveland reported that another church pastor said congregants were leaving when they heard a gunshot.
Reshad Riddle, pictured earlier at left and in court on Monday at right, shot his father in an Easter Sunday church service
'The guy was outside hollering and acting crazy.'
He said the church has about 175 members, none of whom knew what led to the shooting.
'It's such a tragic loss,' Crockett said.
County Coroner Pamela Lancaster said Richard Riddle's wound was 'immediately fatal.'
Ashtabula Police Chief Robert Stell said the younger Riddle offered no motive for the shooting.
'Witnesses at the scene said the shooter entered church and made some references to Allah, but we are not sure if that was a motive or if there was a family problem,' Stell said.
Terrifying: Riddle yelled that the killing was 'the will of Allah. This is the will of God'
A shooting outside this church left one dead on Easter Sunday
'It is always better to be safe than sorry, and we got a great response. Many agencies — easily six agencies — came to assist.'
Dangerous: Court records show Reshad Riddle has an extensive criminal record including a number of felonious assaults
'I did all the investigation I could do under the circumstances at the scene,' she told The Star Beacon.
'There were many churchgoers there, so a tent and drapes were set up around the victim to ensure privacy. We did our best to shelter the situation and get (Richard Riddle’s body) in the transport van quickly.'
Police weren't the only ones who didn't know the extent of the violence, as Associate Pastor Reverend Steve Sargent told how he thought it was the beginning of a shooting spree.
'My mind went into overdrive,' he told The Star Beacon.
'I pulled several people into the bathroom, as many people as I could, and then I ducked under the baptismal.
'I’ve been at this church all my life, and I can’t ever recall an incident of theft. We have no fences here to keep anyone out. People can say what they want about this neighborhood, but the people have always been very receptive and respectful of this church and the work we do here.'
Court records show Reshad Riddle has an extensive criminal record.
Ashtabula County Common Pleas Court records show he was arrested and charged with two counts of felonious assault, kidnapping, abduction and tampering with evidence in 2006.
Looking for answers: Associate Pastor Reverend Steve Sargent points to where Reshad entered the Hiawatha Church of God in Christ church on Sunday
According to police reports, one of the felonious assault charges stemmed from an incident when Reshad Riddle allegedly attempted to cut his girlfriend's throat. Captain Joseph Cellitti said the young woman's neck had been cut with a knife and she suffered bruising on her side and chest.
Church parishioners said Reshad Riddle was a member of the church as a child, but did not attend services regularly as an adult.
'No one would have thought twice about him being here with his family on Easter,' Adams said.
'His family (have) been members here for years and years.'
Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2302085/Hiawatha-Church-God-shooting-One-dead-Easter-Sunday-violence-Ohio.html#ixzz2PHCZWA67
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