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Los Angeles: A Roman Catholic bishop in Southern California was found dead Saturday of a gunshot wound, according to the Los Angeles Times.

The newspaper reported that Bishop David O’Connell was found in Hacienda Heights around 1 pm.

According to information from the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, homicide detectives responded to “a shooting death investigation.” A male adult victim was located and pronounced dead at the scene.

The block in question is a residential street lined with one-storey ranch-style homes.

Los Angeles Archbishop José H. Gomez confirmed the death, saying O’Connell, who served in the city for 45 years as a priest and later a bishop, “passed away unexpectedly.”

“It is a shock and I have no words to express my sadness,” Gomez said in a statement , calling him “a good friend.”

“Bishop Dave was a man of deep prayer who had a great love for Our Blessed Mother,” he said. “He was a peacemaker with a heart for the poor and the immigrant, and he had a passion for building a community where the sanctity and dignity of every human life was honoured and protected.”

Hacienda Heights is an unincorporated community about 30 kilometers east of downtown Los Angeles.