Man found shot to death inside home of suspect who pulled gun on pastor identifed

The medical examiner's office identified the man found shot to death as Derek Polite, 56, of North Braddock

ByYazmin Rodriguez, Ava Rash, & Nick Matoney, CNNWire
Tuesday, May 7, 2024
Body found inside home of man arrested for pulling gun on pastor at church in North Braddock, Pa.
Church service in Pennsylvania came to a terrifying halt on Sunday when authorities say a man allegedly attempted to shoot a pastor during his sermon

NORTH BRADDOCK, Pennsylvania -- The body found in the home of a man who is accused of pulling a gun on a pastor at a church service in North Braddock, Pennsylvanina, on Sunday has been identified.

The video featured is from an earlier report.

Early Monday morning, the Allegheny County Medical Examiner's office identified the man found shot to death in the home as 56-year-old Derek Polite, of North Braddock. He is said to be a relative of Bernard Polite, 26, who has been identified as the suspect, according to court paperwork.

The North Braddock church service was interrupted when Bernard Polite jumped in front of the pastor with a gun in an apparent attempt to shoot him.

This happened at Jesus' Dwelling Place Church on Lobringer Avenue. The church live-streams its services and captured the moment Bernard pulled out a gun and aimed it directly at Pastor Glenn Germany. Luckily, that gun jammed.

"I'm thankful to God that I'm still here because he definitely pulled the trigger," Germany said.

Germany told Pittsburgh's Action News 4 that he had never seen the gunman before Sunday. He says he noticed Bernard frequently coming in and out of the church, even giving the pastor eye contact. That's when the unexpected happened.

"I started to begin to preach and all of a sudden, from my left-hand side, I saw him move from the back to the front of the church, and he set up in the front corner of the church and smiled at me," Germany said. "...All of a sudden, I just saw a gun pointing right at me. And at that point, all I could try to do is run for cover."

Church members quickly jumped into action as Germany took cover. One man even jumped to tackle Bernard. Eventually, he was able to remove the gun from his hands.

"He could have lost his life in that struggle," Germany said of the man who jumped in. "But he sacrificed himself for everyone, and he's the hero."

According to the criminal complaint, Bernard confessed to police that he tried to shoot Germany because, "God told him to do it," and that he wanted to go to jail to clear his mind.

Then, on Sunday evening, a body was found in Bernard's home on the 500 block of Stokes Avenue.

Police said a man, who has since been identified as Derek Polite, was found shot to death inside.

"Nothing bad has ever happened in that home. There were no domestic violence, no fights, no argument that we know of that we could ever have heard," neighbor Guy Diperna said.

Neighbors were shocked to hear about the turn of events. They said Bernard and Derek were nice and there were never any issues.

"I just hope it ain't Bernard, that's all, because he was a nice guy, and so was Derek," neighbor Benjamin Jordan said.

So far, no charges have been filed in connection with the body that was found and Allegheny County police are investigating. that incident.

Meanwhile, Bernard Polite was arraigned early Monday morning on charges connected to the incident in the church, including attempted homicide.

He was being held in the Allegheny County Jail and has a preliminary hearing scheduled for later this month.

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