Church Shooting victim regular church-goer

| January 25, 2010

YOUNGSTOWN – Angeline Fimognari was a devout Catholic who attended Mass daily at St. Dominic Church on the city's South Side.

On Saturday, the 80-year-old was shot to death in the church parking lot following the 8 a.m. Mass after what police believe was a robbery. She was found inside her car with a gunshot wound to the head, according to police.

Detective Sgt. Ron Rodway said investigators were searching a three-block radius around the East Lucius Avenue church on Sunday looking for clues as well as Fimognari's belongings. He said her purse was missing, and police were checking vacant houses and garbage cans for items the robber may have discarded.

"We didn't find anything, and unfortunately, there were no witnesses," Rodway said.

He said police went to several stores in the area to get surveillance video from them, but that is a difficult task on the weekend. He said police are hoping to have better luck today.

"We are hoping people in the community will be outraged enough by this incident that they will help us solve this crime," Rodway said.

He also said the church has security cameras and police were reviewing the tapes.

He said St. Dominic's pastor, the Rev. Gregory Maturi told him Fimognari used to come to daily Mass at 6:30 and 8 a.m. The church recently combined those Masses and began offering just the 8 a.m. service, which she attended every day. She always stayed after Mass for an hour to pray, according to Maturi.

Rodway said Fimognari would sit up front with prayer books around her. She was "old-fashioned" and always wore a black silk scarf on her head with a veil that came down over her face, he said.

He also said she was in remission from cancer, although he didn't know what type.

"She was the last car in the parking lot. We think whoever did this is from the neighborhood and was watching," Rodway said.

The congregation prayed for Fimognari during Mass Sunday and Maturi addressed the crime following the service.

"This is the first time something like this happened at St. Dominic. It was a random, senseless act and was not aimed at our parish. Do not let this crime deter you from attending Mass. But do be cautious and aware, especially if you are alone. We have security and ask that you report anything suspicious to them," Maturi said.

He said parish officials are cooperating with police, who asked that parishioners not release any information to the media. Maturi also said the parish would release a public statement today after speaking with officials from the Catholic Diocese of Youngstown.

"We ask that you pray for the victim, pray for our parish and pray for the city of Youngstown," he said.

Fimognari's death is the fifth homicide in the city this year. Included in that total is a man who was shot and killed by police earlier this month in a shootout at an East Side apartment complex.

The last homicide in the city was Jan. 12, when a man was gunned down on Broadway Avenue on the North Side. Police have issued warrants for a suspect in that case.

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Category: Church Security