Church Leader Hans Schmidt in Critical Condition After Gunshot Wound to Headthedigitalchaps


A religious leader in Arizona is in critical condition after an unknown assailant shot him in the head while he was preaching gospel on a street corner earlier this week.

Hans Schmidt, the 26-year-old outreach director at Victory Chapel in Glendale, was shot in the face at about 6 p.m. Wednesday, Public Information Officer Gina Winn said during a press conference. Authorities are still searching for the culprit, and it remains unclear if Schmidt was shot by someone inside a vehicle or someone passing by on foot.

“This is a horrible, horrible offense,” Winn said. “We have a 26-year-old who was a military medic. He is recently married, he has two small children and he’s currently in a critical state.”

Those who knew Schmidt said he had frequently endured shouts and mockery from people passing by as he preached. “There was a lot of everything, really—hateful comments, people yelling at him, ‘get off the street,’ all sorts of mean things,” Paul Sanchez, who works nearby, told Arizona Family.

Schmidt was taken to an emergency room shortly after the incident. In a post to their website, Victory Chapel said at the time that he was “in desperate need of a miracle.”

Two days later, their outlook appeared brighter: “The family is encouraged by what they are seeing. Please continue to lift Hans up in prayer,” Victory Chapel wrote in an update Friday.

Victory Chapel started a fund in his name for medical expenses. Authorities are set to interview additional witnesses in their attempt to identify a suspect.