Bride and bishop shot by gunman during wedding

Chiara Giordano
In this photo provided by WMUR-TV, police stand outside the New England Pentecostal Church after a shooting during a wedding on Saturday, 12 October 2019, in Pelham, New Hampshire: Siobhan Lopez/WMUR-TV via AP

A bride and bishop were shot during a wedding ceremony after a gunman burst into a church and opened fire.

Stanley Choate, 75, who was presiding over the wedding, was shot in the chest, while the bride, 60-year-old Claire McMullen was shot in the arm.

The groom, 60-year-old Mark Castiglione, was also injured after he was struck in the head by an object at New England Pentecostal church in Pelham, New Hampshire, on Saturday.

The gunman was arrested after guests tackled him to the ground and held him until police arrived shortly after 10am local time.

Police chief Joseph Roark, of Pelham Police Department, told reporters at a press conference: “They basically gang tackled him.

“There was a struggle ... minor injuries occurred to the other guests who were in the struggle with the shooter.”

The suspect, Dale Holloway, 37, is facing counts of causing bodily injury by means of a deadly weapon.

He is due to appear in court on Tuesday.

Police are investigating whether the shooting was linked to a previous incident involving Brandon Castiglione, who shares the same name as the groom.

The 24-year-old has been accused of second degree murder after Luis Garcia, 60, a pastor at the same church, was found shot to death earlier this month.

It is not yet clear whether there is any relationship between Mr Castiglione and the groom, or between the two incidents.

In this photo provided by WMUR-TV, police stand outside the New England Pentecostal Church after a shooting during a wedding on Saturday, 12 October 2019, in Pelham, New Hampshire. (Siobhan Lopez/WMUR-TV via AP)

Mr Roark said: “This does not seem to be a random event at this point, at least that’s what preliminary investigation is telling us.”

Mr Garcia’s funeral was due to take place at the church after the wedding on Saturday.

The church wrote in a Facebook post on Saturday: “We solicit your prayers at this time for the family.

“The family would plead with everyone to refrain from any acts of violence.

“That is not what the bishop would want.”

Local media reports there were about 40 people inside the church at the time of the shooting.

Associated Press contributed to this report.

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