Police in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho said Monday that they’ve found no evidence connecting the shooting of a popular pastor on Sunday to his participation in a campaign rally for Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX).
News that Altar Church pastor Tim Remington was shot in his church parking lot one day after giving the invocation at a Saturday Cruz rally initially raised speculation that there may be a connection. Coeur d’Alene police said in a Monday press conference that they were still searching for a motive, according to local TV station KREM.
Suspect Kyle Odom cased the church for days before the shooting, arriving hours before services began to sit in his car in the parking lot, according to KREM. Odom, an Iraq War veteran that police say has a history of mental illness, remains at large. Police have issued an arrest warrant and are searching for his whereabouts.
Coeur d’Alene Police Chief Lee White said that the shooting appeared to be “a pre-planned attack.”
“Some details surrounding Mr. Odom’s planning are disturbing,” he said.
White said Odom was armed while he was inside the church on Sunday and that the community was “very, very lucky” that the incident was not more severe, according to KREM.
The shooting left Remington with bullet wounds to his skull and back. KREM reports that he is in stable condition at Kootenai Medical Center and is expected to make a full recovery.