The pastor of St. Peter’s Missionary Baptist Church was shot and killed at the end of Sunday services, and his brother is behind bars, accused of pulling the trigger. Lines wrapped around the church where the pastor’s funeral was held Thursday. The suspect has pleaded not guilty to the charges against him.
- Shooting happened inside the church
- Victim identified as William Schooler, 70, of Dayton
- Suspect is his brother, Daniel Schooler, 68, of Dayton
- Daniel Schooler arrested at the church, faces murder charges
- Suspect has history of mental illness and violence, according to court, police records
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UPDATE @ 10:45 a.m. (March 9):
Daniel Schooler was indicted on seven charges today by a grand jury.
Schooler was indicted for aggravated murder, two counts of murder, two counts of felonious assault and two counts of having weapons while under disability, according to court records.
He is scheduled to be arraigned in common pleas court on March 10 at 8:30 a.m.
UPDATE @ 9:36 a.m. (March 9):
A Montgomery County grand jury is scheduled to hear the case involving the shooting death of a Dayton pastor, according to a court clerk.
Daniel Schooler, 68, is charged with two counts of murder, one count of aggravated murder, two counts of felonious assault and two counts of having weapons under disability
UPDATE @ 2:01 p.m. (March 3):
A long line of mourners wrapped around the Zion Hill Missionary Baptist Church building on Thursday as people gathered to pay their last respects to a local pastor who was shot and killed inside his church.
Rev. William B. Schooler, 70, was shot multiple times inside St. Peter’s Missionary Church on Sunday. His brother Daniel G. Schooler, 68, is facing multiple charges in connection with the pastor’s murder.
On Thursday, Gale McLemore said she knew a large amount of people would attend the service for Schooler. The pastor’s reach went beyond the pulpit and extended into the community, she said.
“It’s very difficult and there’s really no words to express what’s in our hearts today,” she said. “I think he meant a lot to the people in the city. The lives he touched. The children’s lives he touched as an educator. The efforts he put into the community.”
William Schooler was known as a leader within the Dayton community. After graduating from Dunbar High School in 1963, he went on to become a decorated Vietnam Veteran who received the Bronze Star.
William Schooler taught in the Dayton Public Schools district from 1972 until 1978 before becoming a principal in the Jefferson Twp. from 1978 until 1997, when he retired. He was also a was also a former Dayton Board of Education member.
William Schooler had integrity, said Derrick Atterberry, a Dayton resident who came to the funeral to pay his respects.
“He was about people,” Atterberry said. “He showed love, and I think this is their way of showing love back to him.”
UPDATE @ 10:54 a.m. (March 3):
A line formed outside of Zion Hill Missionary Baptist Church on West Third Street prior to Rev. William Schooler’s funeral service Thursday morning. People visiting the church for the funeral services said the church is full.
UPDATE @ 2:05 p.m. (March 2):
Daniel Schooler was arraigned on two counts of murder, one count of aggravated murder, two counts of felonious assault and two counts of having weapons under disability in Dayton Municipal Court this afternoon.
Schooler pleaded not guilty to the charges and he is continuing to be held in the Montgomery County Jail with a $1 million bond.
Preliminary hearing is set for March 9.
UPDATE @ 11:17 a.m. (March 2):
Daniel Schooler shot his brother four times with a stolen .380 caliber handgun, the final shot being witnessed by William Schooler’s wife, according to court documents filed by Dayton police.
“The defendant then laid the gun down and waited for police who took him into custody,” said the affidavit written by a Dayton police detective.
The affidavit said Daniel Schooler confronted his brother at 12:22 p.m. Feb. 28 “and with prior calculation and design, carried out previous threats to kill the victim,” detective Nathan Via wrote. The document also noted that the defendant had two prior convictions for felonious assault, is under a weapons disability and is a repeat violent offender.
Daniel Schooler is scheduled to be arraigned today in Dayton Municipal Court on several counts including murder.
UPDATE @ 3:28 p.m. (March 1):
Funeral services for the Rev. William B. Schooler have been scheduled for 11 a.m. Thursday at Zion Hill Missionary Baptist Church, 1900 W. Third St., Dayton.
UPDATE @ 1:18 p.m.:
Daniel Schooler, 68, has been charged with three counts of murder, two counts of felonious assault and two counts of using weapons under disability, according to a Dayton Municipal Court clerk.
The charges were filed around 1 p.m. Tuesday.
The clerk said while the charges were filed, Schooler is not expected to appear in court on Tuesday.
Prosecutor’s said the case will be presented to a grand jury at a future date.
“This is a tragic and senseless shooting. We extend our condolences to not only the family of the victim, but also to the congregation of St. Peter’s Missionary Baptist Church,” said Montgomery County Prosecutor Mat Heck Jr..
The Rev. William Schooler, 70, was gunned down just before 12:30 p.m. in his office in back of his church while the choir was singing at the end of Sunday services.
The congregation heard the shots that claimed their beloved pastor, community leader and former Dayton Board of Education member in their Nancy Avenue church.
“I just got everybody out of the church and we just kept hearing shooting and shooting,” said Alberta Blayth of Dayton. The church member said she saw the accused shooter, the pastor’s 68-year-old brother Daniel Schooler, head for the office while the pastor’s wife and the pastor were inside.
A church member called 911 when the shooting began: “Our pastor just got shot by his brother! … He’s still shooting him!” Dispatch: “Where is the shooter at?” Caller: “In the church. In the back, with his brother and his wife.”
Before the shooting, the service was turned over to Curtis Booker, the choir director, who said he saw Daniel Schooler get up and follow his brother to the back.
“Then I heard the first pop and I thought he fell because there’s a little step right there. Then I heard a second pop. And I was like, that sounds like gunshots,” Booker said.
“We heard pow, pow,” church member Beulah Booker-Robertson said, recounting the shooting. “The usher at the door said ‘everybody get down, everybody get out.’ ”
Dayton police said Schooler was shot multiple times, but that the congregation and community at large were not targeted and there were no other intended victims.
“I want to make sure the public understands this is not a random act of violence,” Sgt. Creigee Coleman said. “This was somewhat of a domestic situation between family members.”
Daniel Schooler was taken into custody at the church. He was led in handcuffs to a waiting police cruiser and is now behind bars at the Montgomery County Jail, where he was booked on suspicion of murder. He is scheduled to be arraigned Monday afternoon, online jail records show.
The shooting remains under investigation, and police and prosecutors plan to meet to discuss formal charges.
A Schooler family member said Daniel Schooler struggled with mental illness. “Bipolar, schizophrenic. He had a lot of things going on he was dealing with,” said Joyce Napier, niece of the pastor and suspect. “I don’t think he woke up this morning and said ‘I want to kill my brother.’ I just think the mental state and illness goes together and that’s what evil does.”
The Schooler family is in pain, Napier said, but will grieve together.
“We stick together. And we pray. And don’t turn on each other … because he has daughters, the other one has daughters. And we loved them both, so we have to stick together. That’s all we know, that’s all we have,” she said.