Victim, suspect identified in fatal attack at church gathering - KRISTV.com | Continuous News Coverage | Corpus Christi

Victim, suspect identified in fatal attack at church gathering

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UPDATE: This story has been updated to clarify the role of one of the stabbing victims in this incident. Information regarding a man previously identified as the church's pastor has been changed to reflect his role as a leader in the church. 

Wednesday night's stabbing attack at a private church service has turned into a murder investigation after one of the four people injured died. Officers have one male suspect in custody.

Nueces County jail officials say 28-year-old Marco Moreno has been booked and is charged with one count of murder and three counts of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon. His bail has been set at $1.45 million.

Frank Castillo, a 61-year-old member of the church, died at the scene after being reportedly stabbed in the neck during a gathering at a private residence. Another man, identified as a leader in the church, sustained life-threatening injuries and was taken to a hospital in critical condition. 

It was just after 7:00 p.m. Wednesday when officers were called to the residence on the 1200 block of Cambridge Drive. When officers arrived, they reportedly found at least a dozen churchgoers that had been holding a special service at the residence. 

Witnesses told police that during the service after a song, Moreno unexpectedly leaped from the crowd and attacked the member of the church who was leading the service, stabbing him and another member.

Two other churchgoers, who attempted to intervene, were also injured. One was stabbed in the hand and the other in the arm, according to officers. They are expected to be okay.

CCPD said that a dozen or so individuals may have been on the property, with more arriving, when the incident occurred. All had been arriving for a special service hosted by a non-denominational church. Police did not identify the church, however, online records show "Kingdom Acts Ministries International" with a location matching the address.

One member of the church said Moreno had been coming to the services for quite some time. She said her and her husband arrived to the services late and that may have saved their lives. 

"I never thought this would happen," Elena Flores said. "I never thought I would be a witness to this or my husband. We arrived late so I was thinking that could have been my husband because it seems like he was going after the guys, the men."

This story has been updated to show that the person who died was not a member of the church band, according to family members. 

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