Accused Kroger shooter tried to enter nearby church before going to the store

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Before 51-year-old Gregory Bush allegedly killed two people at the Stony Brook Kroger in Jeffersontown Wednesday afternoon, surveillance video shows him trying to get into a predominantly African American church not far away. 

Bush was seen on surveillance video at the First Baptist Church of Jeffersontown at 2:37 p.m. on Oct. 24th. That's about 15 minutes before 911 calls came in reporting the shooting at Kroger.

In the video, Bush can be seen pulling and banging on doors at multiple entrances, but he couldn't get in because they were locked. About eight staff members were inside the church, but didn't hear his knocking.

Billy Williams, church administrator, said he's thankful Bush didn't arrive any earlier, when dozens of people were inside for a midday service. 

"Loss of life anywhere is pretty tragic, but just to think that an hour and a half earlier, we had 70 people in the church. But by the time he came through, all doors were locked and there were probably eight or 10 still in the building," Williams said. 

Surveillance cameras also caught Bush turning out of the church parking lot, then turning right on to Taylorsville Road in the direction of the Kroger. Williams told WDRB the shooting victims were relatives of some of the church members. He said seeing Bush on the video was chilling.

"He was here 10 minutes or so before the tragedy over at Kroger's," he said.

The surveillance video from Wednesday at First Baptist Church Jeffersontown has been turned over to investigators. Williams said he can't release the footage yet.

He says one church member was sitting in the car in the parking lot when she saw Bush, called the pastor and left a message. Later, when she saw Bush on the news, she called him again.

"He actually passed by her car, reversed it and looked at her face to face, then proceeded to drive a few more spaces and parked in a parking spot," Williams said. "He stood there and he kept looking left and right over his shoulders and he kept moving something around in his possession. I clipped that part of the video and notified members of the J-Town police staff."

Williams said the church has had cameras for six years, but upgraded last year in light of the 2015 Charleston church shooting, where nine parishioners were killed in a racially-motivated shooting.

"Now we've added, I think in the last year, 16 new views within the church and upgraded cameras with better quality of cameras on the outside of the church," Williams said.

After the shooting, Williams said security changes at the church are being made.

"Wednesday night, my pastor and I were already working to change our procedures," he said. "We thought we were in pretty good shape, as part of security, doors are locked."

Right now, Williams says people come out and greet the people at the door, but that will change. The church is looking into an intercom system for the doors.

Maurice Stallard, 69, and Vickie Jones, 67, lost their lives in the shooting. Police say Bush shot Stallard inside the store before killing Jones in the parking lot. 

He appeared in court Thursday morning, where the judge set his bond at $5 million. 

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