SDPD stationed at worship centers in wake of New Zealand shootings

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SAN DIEGO — The mass shooting at a pair of mosques in New Zealand Thursday has prompted the San Diego Police Department to increase its presence at places of worship.

“Today we awoke with heavy hearts. Our thoughts and prayers go out to the victims, their grieving families, and all who have been affected by these senseless acts at the mosques in New Zealand. Hate and violence have no place in our society. No person should ever be in fear of attending their sacred place of worship.  Although there is no indication of a specific threat in the San Diego area, you will see an increased police presence around places of worship. We ask that if anyone has any information on threats of violence to please report it immediately. It is vital that we are made aware of potential threats so we are able to investigate and ultimately prevent injuries & loss of life,” San Diego Police Chief David Nisleit said.

The death toll stands at 49 after the massacre, a shooting spree carried out in broad daylight.

The alleged shooter, a 28-year-old man from Australia, was arrested soon after and charged with murder. At least three others have been arrested in connection with the crime. Moments before his rampage, the alleged shooter is believed to have posted a manifesto online that professed anti-immigrant views.

While there has not been a threat specific to San Diego, police are calling for heightened awareness from residents.

Police declined to give specifics on the boosted deployment.

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