Man's gun fails to fire after trying to shoot pastor during church sermon

By John Mercury May 7, 2024

A man who tried to shoot a pastor during his service at a church was wrestled to the floor after his gun failed to fire, according to police.

Bernard J. Polite, 26, said “God made me do it” and planned to “wait to be arrested”, court documents reveal, when he entered the Pennsylvania church just after 1pm on Sunday.

Glenn Germany, who was giving a sermon being live streamed from Jesus’ Dwelling Place Church, told WTAE-TV in Pittsburgh that Polite smiled at him just before he pointed the gun.

He ducked out of the way as someone from the congregation tackled Polite, before he helped to wrest the gun away and keep him down until officers arrived.

“I am feeling grateful that I woke up this morning and that I am here, it could have gone an opposite direction,” Mr Germany said on Monday.

“But God has intervened and I am grateful for him.”

Polite was not known at the church, officials said, and court filings say he wandered over to the church after hearing music coming from there.

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The body of a shooting victim was found in a home near the church in North Braddock, where Polite had been shortly before going to the church, county police said.

The county medical examiner’s office identified the body as Derek Polite, 56, of North Braddock, but did not confirm any specific relation to Bernard Polite.

Polite faces numerous charges, including aggravated assault and attempted homicide, and is in custody without bail.

State police said they don’t know if Polite has a lawyer, and county court records do not list one.

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In a Facebook post on Monday, the church said Pastor Glenn is “doing fine” and “he says he is doing great and blessed to be alive”.

“He sends his love to everyone and he thanks you all for your prayers and concerns,” it adds.

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