The father of two is in a critical condition after sustaining a gunshot wound to the head while delivering a sermon and encouraging members to attend his church service on Wednesday evening at a corner in Glendale.
Hans Schmidt, a 26-year-old man and former military combat medic, is the outreach director of Victory Chapel in Glendale. He is married with two young children and the Pentecostal church typically attracts around 100 attendees to its services.
According to reports, Schmidt was standing peacefully with a megaphone when he was targeted. He is currently hospitalized and his condition is critical.
A congregation is in shock after a beloved religious leader was shot in the head while preaching on a Glendale street corner on Wednesday night. In an update on Friday morning, Glendale police say 26-year-old Hans Schmidt, a husband and father of two, remains in critical condition and officers are asking for the public’s help in finding who’s responsible.
It happened on the northwest corner of 51st and Peoria avenues around 6 p.m. Wednesday. Friends say it happened as the former military combat medic was standing with a megaphone on the street corner, preaching the gospel to people passing by, something he’d apparently done countless times before. Only this time, someone pulled out a gun and shot him.
Friends and family can’t understand why. “Who knows why someone would want to take it out on a preacher like that because he’s speaking the gospel and good news to everybody. He’s out to help the community,” said Henry Branch, who lives nearby. Schmidt also helps lead weekly services at the Victory Chapel as the outreach director.
Witness accounts indicate that people driving by were shouting and cursing at him prior to the shooting.
As of yet, no suspects have been identified or apprehended. The Glendale police are asking anyone with information regarding this incident to contact them for assistance.
Victory Chapel is raising money to help Hans Schmidt. Click here to donate.
From Fox 10 Phoenix: