Carlos Medina was arrested at his home in the Torrance area of Los Angeles after a six-hour stand-off with police. Bishop David O'Connell, originally from Brooklodge in Glanmire, in County Cork, was found dead at his home on the morning of Sat, Feb 18.
Carlos Medina's wife was Bishop David O'Connell's housekeeper and Medina himself had done work for the Bishop. Following the murder, LA County Sheriff Robert Luna said the police had pursued Medina following a tip-off from the public that he had been acting strangely and claiming the bishop owed him money.
Two firearms were found at Medina's house and have been sent for forensic testing.
Medina had initially fled his home by the time police arrived. A tip-off from a neighbor on Sunday night informed them that Medina had returned. At 2 am a standoff between police began. By Monday at 8:15 am, Medina gave himself up.
Bishop O'Connell was found shot in his bedroom at his home, 1500 block of Janlu Avenue in Hacienda Heights, by a deacon when he was late to show up for a meeting. The Bishop was pronounced dead at the scene.
As news circulated that Medina had been arrested for the crime locals reacted. Luis Lopez, a neighbor, told CBS, Medina's wife had worked for the Bishop for about a decade. His wife is cooperating with the police.
Speaking of the suspect he said "He's not your average suspect, he looks like your average grandpa.
"He looked like he wouldn't hurt a fly."
Here's a local KTLA 5 report on the death:
Sheriff Luna said at a press conference on Monday, "Although I personally did not know the bishop, I cannot tell you how many phone calls I’ve received over the last 48 hours of people who have worked with him in different capacities.
“This bishop made a huge difference in our community. He was loved,” the AP reported.
O'Connell had been a priest for 45 years. In 2015, Pope Francis named him one of several auxiliary bishops of the archdiocese. Angelus News reports that O'Connell worked for years brokering peace between residents and law enforcement in LA following the violent death of Rodney King in 1992.
In recent years he worked with immigrant children and families from Central America. His friend Los Angeles Archbishop Jose H. Gomez remembered him fondly including his fluent Spanish, with an Irish accent. He recalled his “compassion to the poor, to the homeless, to the immigrant, and to all those living on society’s margins.”
“He was a good priest and a good bishop and a man of peace and we’re very sad to lose him."
The Diocese of Cork and Ross in Ireland, where O’Connell was born, also responded to his death. Bishop Fintan Gavin said in a statement that O’Connell “has always maintained his connection with family and friends in Cork” through frequent visits back to Ireland.