(RepublicanNews.org) – A Catholic priest was killed on Sunday, December 10th, in an assault at the St. John the Baptist Church church in Nebraska.
Father Stephen Gutgsell, a Catholic priest in Fort Calhoun, was attacked in the church’s rectory. He was promptly transported to the University of Nebraska Medical Center, where he later succumbed to his injuries.
Local media reports that the priest was stabbed in the church. He was 65 years of age. The Washington County Sheriff’s Office said that the stabbing occurred at around 5:05 am on Sunday.
Kierre L. Williams, 43, from Sioux City, Iowa, was apprehended by law enforcement officials at the scene of the attack. He was later charged on suspicion of murder and use of a weapon to commit a felony.
The investigation is ongoing, although details on the motive for the attack have not been released.
The Archdiocese of Omaha said it was praying for Father Gutgsell, who was attacked “during an invasion at the rectory”. It added that no further details were available on Sunday, and called for worshippers to join Archbishop George Lucas in prayer for the slain priest.
Further updates have since been provided. An affidavit obtained by the Associated Press revealed that the murder weapon was found in a nearby bedroom. It also states that the door had been “forced open” with the priest calling for help when Deputy Brady Tucker arrived at the scene.
Furthermore, the affidavit claimed the murder was “premeditated and done deliberately”. It did not clarify whether Williams and Gutgsell had any previous connections, especially as the suspect is not from Fort Calhoun but Sioux City, some 75 miles away.
Williams is reportedly a convicted felon with warrants against his name in other states. Police added that there was no further threat to the public following Williams’ arrest.
Fort Calhoun is a tiny city in Washington County. Its latest population count stood at 1,113 as of 2021.
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