Laguna Woods church shooter bounced between security jobs, had license to carry a gun

View Original Notice ? Laguna Woods church shooter bounced between security jobs, had license to carry a gun

A Las Vegas man who allegedly harbored a grudge against Taiwan and is accused of killing one person and shooting four others at a Taiwanese Presbyterian church gathering in Laguna Woods bounced between security jobs where he was licensed to carry a firearm, records show.

David Wenwei Chou, 68, was employed as an armed security guard at five different companies between 2014 and 2021, according to documents filed with Nevada’s Private Investigator Licensing Board.

A worker who answered the phone Monday at Vegas Plus Security and Event Staffing, where Chou worked in 2019 serving Las Vegas’ bustling convention industry, declined to provide her name and said she was unauthorized to discuss his employment. Officials at the other four security companies could not be reached.

  • An apartment building formerly owned by David Chou is seen...

    An apartment building formerly owned by David Chou is seen in Las Vegas, Monday, May 16, 2022. Authorities in Orange County, Calif., say Chou opened fire with a gun a day earlier at a Southern California church before a pastor hit him with a chair and parishioners hog-tied him with electrical cords. (AP Photo/Ken Ritter)

  • Balmore Orellana talks with a reporter about his former landlord...

    Balmore Orellana talks with a reporter about his former landlord and neighbor, David Chou, in Las Vegas, Monday, May 16, 2022. Authorities in Orange County, Calif., say Chou opened fire with a gun a day earlier at a Southern California church before a pastor hit him with a chair and parishioners hog-tied him with electrical cords. (AP Photo/Ken Ritter)

  • In this photo released Monday, May 16, 2022, by the...

    In this photo released Monday, May 16, 2022, by the Orange County Sheriff’s Department is David Chou. Authorities said Chou, the gunman in Sunday’s deadly attack at a Southern California church, was a Chinese immigrant motivated by hate for Taiwanese people. Chou was booked on one count of murder and five counts of attempted murder. (Orange County Sheriff’s Department via AP)

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Chou had passed a guard licensing exam and was slated to requalify with a firearm by October 31, documents show.

Clark County property records indicate that from 2011 to 2018, he owned a fourplex on Ala Drive, located in a hardscrabble neighborhood off the Las Vegas Strip.

A woman, who lives next door to the apartment building and declined to give her name told a Las Vegas Review-Journal reporter that Chou was a “grumpy,” landlord who used to quarrel with tenants over parking spaces.

On Monday, a faded U.S. flag hung from the door of one of the vacant units Chou owned with “God Bless American Citizens” written on it.  A strand of material was attached to the flag bearing Chou’s name.

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Chou is charged with killing Dr. John Cheng, a family practice and sports-medicine specialist from Laguna Niguel, who tackled the suspect before being fatally shot. Four other members of the Irvine Taiwanese Presbyterian Church ranging in age from 66 to 92 years old were also shot but are expected to survive.

The shooting occurred at around 1:30 p.m. at a post-service lunch for the church, which shares the space at Geneva Presbyterian in Laguna Woods.

Chou pulled out a handgun during the lunch and started shooting at parishioners — who subdued Chou, taking away two guns that were registered to him, and tying him up with extension cords, according to law enforcement officials.

The suspect had driven on Saturday to Orange County, and is believed to have targeted the church because it was the nearest gathering of people of Taiwanese ethnicity he could find, Orange County Sheriff Don Barnes said Monday.

Detectives found evidence that Chou “was upset about political tensions between China and Taiwan,”  he said.

Chou is in custody at the Orange County Intake Release Center on $1 million bail, jail records show. He is scheduled to appear in Central Jail Court for his arraignment on Tuesday.

 

 

 

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