Local News

Shotgun shells, gas mask recovered in church fire-suicide case

Posted January 16

Wake County sheriff's investigators say Jason Terrell Martin crashed an SUV into St. Luke the Evangelist Roman Catholic Church early on June 11, 2014, before setting the sanctuary on fire and then killing himself.

— Police seized a 12-gauge shotgun, new and used matches and a CS gas canister along with a gas mask during their investigation of a series of events that led to a Raleigh man killing himself in the parking lot of a local church over the weekend.

Search warrants in the case also show that investigators also seized a box of 12-gauge shotgun shells from Jason Terrell Martin's home on Carrington Drive.

Wake County sheriff's investigators say Martin, 20, set fire at the home around 2:30 a.m. Saturday and then drove to St. Luke the Evangelist Roman Catholic Church, about four miles away, on Bayleaf Church Road, crashed into its front door and then set the sanctuary on fire.

Martin then went into the church parking lot where he shot himself in the head.

Authorities haven't said why Martin might have killed himself or set fire to the church or his home, and the search warrants offer no insight into why.

The warrants, however, do say that Martin's sister alerted authorities about her brother's actions and that she told firefighters she saw her brother set fire to their home, which they shared with their parents.

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