Police in Chino, CA, say Pastor Andrew Stoecklein was inside the Inland Hills Church when he attempted to commit suicide last Friday. After being hospitalized, he succumbed to his injuries and died on Saturday.
Tamrin Olden, a crime prevention supervisor with the City of Chino Police Department, told Christian Post, “Someone called in and said that they’d seen him or discovered him at the church. I don’t know the details of where he was at. He was inside the building somewhere but I don’t know exactly.”
Olden, whose department regularly works with Inland Hills Church on community initiatives, wouldn’t say how Stoecklein attempted to kill himself. Several police officers are members of the church.
“Obviously it’s a devastating situation regardless of who is involved,” Olden said, “but the fact that we have a connection to that congregation makes it even more impactful. We are a very small, tight-knit community. We have a lot of personnel who are familiar with the church, who attend the church. We have family and friends from the church who live in the community. It’s definitely been a large impact. A lot of people were familiar with the congregation. We have a small hometown feel. So we’re going to be impacted by those types of tragedies even more so because of our connection to them.”
Stoecklein leaves behind his wife, Kayla, and three sons. Two weeks prior to his death, he had just returned to Inland Hills after a four-month sabbatical to deal with depression and anxiety.