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Woodrow Karey Jr. and Ronald J. Harris.

Woodrow Karey Jr. and Ronald J. Harris.

Sheriff's Office report on fatal church shooting released

Last Modified: Thursday, October 03, 2013 10:18 AM

By Johnathan Manning / American Press

Woodrow Karey told Calcasieu sheriff’s deputies several times Friday night “he raped my wife” after turning himself in for the killing of pastor Ronald J. Harris Sr., according to the initial crime report.

Authorities said Karey, 53, walked into Tabernacle of Praise Worship Center and shot Harris, 53, twice with a shotgun.

After Karey turned himself in, deputies asked him if he had shot someone, according to the report, released Wednesday to the media. “Yes,” the report says he replied.

On Monday, Calcasieu Sheriff Tony Mancuso said Karey had learned of a possible sexual relationship between his wife and Harris, either consensual or nonconsensual.

Karey’s wife filed a rape complaint against Harris the Wednesday before the shooting. Karey was a former member of the church.

The report says people in the parking lot told deputies Karey entered the church with a gun raised, pointed at Harris and fired two shots. Karey, the report says, fled the church on foot through the north doors of the church.

The report says people were running from the building into the parking lot when deputies arrived. Deputies and Lake Charles police entered the church, the report says, and found Harris lying on the floor next to a pew and several people sitting on a pew.

EMTs found no vital signs.

According to the report, Karey called authorities to turn himself in and was arrested in an empty lot on the north side of Opelousas Street.

A deputy asked Karey where the guns were located, and he “then nodded over his shoulder toward the woods,” the report says.

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