On Monday, June 6, a 63-year-old Florida pastor shot and killed his wife when his gun accidentally went off, reports the Orlando Sentinel.
According to Darrell Reid, who called the police and reported the incident, he shot and killed his wife Katie, 62, while cleaning his gun in their home.
Sheriff’s Office spokesman Travis Mackey says that this is currently labeled as a death investigation and Reid has not been arrested or charged.
Both of the Reids were founders of and pastors at “Happy Hill Ministries,” which they ran out of their home. The church’s mission, according to their website, is to “seek out the lost, lonely and hopeless and introduce them to the Love of God.” The website also says that Darrell and Katie met when they were only twelve years old.
‘We became ‘Bestest Friends’ and finally were married in May of 1980. She knew long before I did that God had put us together.’
Scott Hamilton, the man who now runs the ministry, said Katie Reid had been asking her husband to look at her gun because it had jammed. Hamilton also said, according to WESH, that Darrell is heartbroken over the accident and “speculation circulating that this was anything but a tragedy is making things harder on him.”
Kevin Ellis, the Reids neighbor, was shocked when he heard about the accident and said that he does not suspect any foul play. He told the Orlando Sentinel, “I feel bad for him because I know he feels awful about what happened. I couldn’t see that coming from Darrell. He doesn’t have any mean tendencies. He’s a really nice guy.”
Despite his reputation for being a “really nice guy,” Darrell Reid was arrested in 2012 on a resisting an officer with violence charge and again in 2014 on an aggravated battery with a deadly weapon charge.
The Reids’ marriage also seems to have been a bit more tumultuous that people like the Reid’s attorney, Chris Pennington, have been led to believe. While Pennington says that the Reids had a “loving marriage” and “seemed very close,” a close family friend revealed that their relationship was “violent.” Based on records from Orange County deputies, deputies were summoned to the Reid home 23 times in the last year years.
No charges have been filed yet against Darrell Reid, and while authorities are still investigating, the police are currently calling the shooting accidental.
Hamilton also reported that, among the ministry, they had begun to call Katie Reid their “miracle” woman, due to the fact that she had battled her way back from an illness that had previously left her comatose.
To learn more, watch the news report below, courtesy of NBC Miami:
Featured image via Happy Hill Ministries website.