Gunman opens fire on church in Brazil, killing 5 people

Brazil Gunman kills five altar Sao Paulo cathedral

Brazil Gunman kills five altar Sao Paulo cathedral

Four elderly people were seriously wounded by the man, who began shooting at the congregation with two guns, according to a spokesperson with the fire department in Campinas, an industrial city 100 kilometres northwest of Sao Paulo, where the shooting took place. "It's hard to imagine the pain this has caused".

Four injured were taken to local hospitals but were out of danger.

Authorities said they had not identified a motive.

President-elect Jair Bolsonaro described the shooting as "a barbaric crime" on Twitter and the mayor of Campinas has declared three days of official mourning.

Police in the adjacent public square rushed into the house of worship upon hearing the shots, investigator Jose Henrique Ventura told reporters at the scene. "Thanks to the intervention of police, something much bigger was avoided", Ventura said.

Eyewitnesses said that after the Mass finished, he turned around and shot the worshippers who had sat down behind him, one of whom died.

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"An individual entered a church and opened fire on several people", a police spokesperson said. "I can't get it out of my head", she said in tears.

While Brazil had almost 64,000 murders previous year, more than any other country, mass shootings in public areas are relatively rare.

Brazil is routinely the world leader in total homicides, though mass shootings are rare.

Still, mass shootings like those in the United States are unusual.

Hamilton Caviola Filho, a police investigator, told news portal G1 that authorities had reviewed surveillance footage from inside the cathedral. In total, he said the suspect fired at least 20 shots.

Four people were killed and four more injured before the 49-year-old turned the gun on himself after being shot by police.

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