Usher hailed as hero in church shooting

(WSMV) Robert Caleb Engle is being hailed as a hero after helping to stop the accused gunman during the shooting at Burnette Chapel Church of Christ in Antioch, Tennessee Sunday.

Police said Samson shot and killed 39-year-old Melanie Crow Smith in the parking lot as the church dismissed at 11:15 a.m. Sunday.

Samson then entered the sanctuary of the building through the front door.

According to police and witnesses at the scene, Engle, who is an usher at the church, confronted Samson. Engle was then pistol-whipped by Samson. The two got into a scuffle before Samson shot himself in the chest.

Engle, who has a carry permit, went out to his car to get a gun, despite suffering a head injury.

Engle then went back inside the church to confront Samson and held him at gunpoint until authorities arrived.

Engle declined an on-camera interview but did send a statement.

When complimented about his heroism, Engle said, “I do not want to be labeled a hero. The real heroes are the police, first responders, medical staff and doctors who have helped me and everyone affected.” provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others and keep the conversation on topic and civil. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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