3 killed in shooting outside US church

Three people, including the gunman, were killed during a shooting incident outside a church in the US state of Iowa, authorities said.

The incident took place on Thursday evening in Ames, a city in Story County about 50 km north of state capital Des Moines, reports Xinhua news agency.

Taking to Twitter, the Story County Sheriff’s Office said they received multiple calls reporting that a male individual had shot two people in the parking lot of the Cornerstone Church.

“There are three people deceased, one of them being the male identified as the shooter,” the Office said, adding that the gunman died of a self-inflicted wound.

“There is not an ongoing threat to the community. There will be no further updates at this time,” it added.

Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds said the shooting was an “act of senseless violence”.

“Tonight’s act of senseless violence took the lives of two innocent victims at their place of worship. Kevin and I grieve for the families who have suffered an unfathomable loss,” she tweeted early Friday morning.

“And while the investigation continues and we learn more, we ask that Iowans pray for the victims and their families, the members of Cornerstone Church, and the entire Ames community.”

This incident in Ames follows several high-profile mass shootings.

Ten people were killed at a Buffalo, New York, grocery store on May 14, while 19 children and two teachers were shot dead at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas, school on May 24.

On Wednesday, four people were shot and killed at a Tulsa, Oklahoma, medical building.

Earlier on Thursday, President Joe Biden called on Congress to take action on gun violence, including a ban on assault-style weapons and high-capacity magazines, or at least raise the purchasing age from 18 to 21.

So far this year, the US has seen at least 233 mass shootings with more than 18,000 deaths due to gun violence, according to the nonprofit organisation Gun Violence Archive.




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