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Published: Sunday, 11/2/2008

Gunman kills pastor, wounds deacon


COVINGTON, Ky. A gunman fatally shot a Cincinnati minister and wounded a church deacon just after the two men arrived at a northern Kentucky church to attend a funeral, police said.

Court records in Hamilton County, Ohio, revealed a yearlong dispute between the accused gunman and the minister, the Rev. Donald Fairbanks, Sr.

Mr. Fairbanks and Dowdell Cobb were shot just before 11 a.m. on Saturday, police said. The gunman chased one of the men to a nearby park, where he shot the man a second time, said Lee Russo, Covington police chief. It was unclear which of the men was shot in the park.

Frederick L. Davis, of Covington, quickly surrendered to police and was charged with murder, first degree assault, criminal mischief, and violating an emergency protection order. He was being held without bail in Kenton County, Kentucky, jail and was scheduled to appear in court on Monday.

Mr. Fairbanks, pastor of Cincinnati s New St. Paul Missionary Baptist Church, died later Saturday at St. Elizabeth Medical Center in Covington, authorities said. Mr. Cobb, a deacon at the church, was treated at University Hospital in Cincinnati.

In June, 2007, Mr. Fairbanks filed a complaint accusing Davis of making a threatening phone call to his wife, records showed. Mr. Davis, 40, pleaded guilty to disorderly conduct in October, 2007, and a judge sentenced him to a year s probation and ordered him to stay away from Mr. Fairbanks and New St. Paul Baptist Church.

Mr. Fairbanks and Mr. Cobb had hoped to attend the funeral of a 71-year-old woman who was related to a member of New St. Paul s congregation. Officials at Covington s Ninth Street Baptist Church went ahead with an abbreviated service for the woman after the shooting.

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