Murder investigation launched after Catholic bishop is found shot dead in his Los Angeles home

A Los Angeles Catholic bishop was found dead from a gunshot wound inside his home in a suburb of the city, according to officials.

Police were called to the home of auxiliary bishop David O’Connell in the Hacienda Heights neighborhood at 1pm on Saturday, reported The Los Angeles Times.

The Irish-born bishop was found inside the home with a single gunshot wound to the upper torso, said officials.

His death is now being investigated as a murder.

José H Gomez, the archbishop of Los Angeles, said in a statement that the 69-year-old bishop had died “unexpectedly.”

“I am very sad this afternoon to report that our beloved Auxiliary Bishop David O’Connell has passed away unexpectedly. It is a shock and I have no words to express my sadness,” he said.

“As a priest and later a bishop here in Los Angeles for forty-five years, Bishop Dave was a man of deep prayer who had a great love for Our Blessed Mother.

“He was a peacemaker with a heart for the poor and the immigrant, and he had a passion for building a community where the sanctity and dignity of every human life was honored and protected.”

Bishop O’Connell was a native of Ireland’s County Cork and was ordained to serve in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles in 1979. He was appointed an auxiliary bishop by Pope Francis in 2015.