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84-year-old man, 75-year-old woman shot dead at church meeting in Alabama

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(VESTAVIA HILLS, Ala.) — An 84-year-old man and a 75-year-old woman were shot dead at a small church group meeting in Vestavia Hills, Alabama, Thursday night, authorities said.

The suspect — a 71-year-old man who occasionally attended Saint Stephen’s Episcopal Church — is in custody, Vestavia Hills Police said at a news conference Friday.

The gunman also wounded an 84-year-old woman, police said.

The suspect was at the church event when he took out a handgun and opened fire, police said. A motive is not clear, police said.

An event attendee subdued the suspect until police arrived, which authorities said helped save lives.

The suspect acted alone, police said.

Vestavia Hills Mayor Ashley Curry said the community, located about 7 miles outside of Birmingham, is “close-knit, resilient” and “loving.”

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