An Oregon man who was fatally shot as he wielded samurai swords and tried to attack guests at a landmark Scientology building was a former follower of the religion who had made at least a dozen previous threats against the church, officials said Monday.
Mario Majorski, 48, was shot once by a security guard as he tried to use the swords to attack guests Sunday at the Scientology Celebrity Centre in Hollywood, police said. Hundreds of people were eating brunch or doing other activities at the time, said Scientology spokesman Tommy Davis.
Majorski had threatened the church in incidents dating to at least 2005 that were reported to the Los Angeles Police Department, the FBI and Oregon authorities, Davis said. The threats were allegedly made through faxes and telephone calls, but police and the FBI could not immediately confirm how many were made.
"He was clearly disturbed," Davis said. "It's just a tragic incident. Our condolences go out to his family or friends."
Majorski had been a Scientologist in the early 1990s but appeared to have left the church about 15 years ago, Davis said.
The shooting will be reviewed by the district attorney's office, but police were treating the killing as justifiable.
"The security guard had to take action to prevent the deceased from killing or maiming people on the premises," Los Angeles police Detective Wendi Berndt said.
Security surveillance tape showed Majorski arriving around noon in a red convertible, then approaching the guards with a sword in each hand before he was shot, Berndt said. No other weapons were found in the car, which Berndt said she thought was a rental.
Majorski was pronounced dead at Los Angeles County-USC Medical Center.
Public records show he was born in Los Angeles County and was associated with a string of addresses there and in Oregon, most recently living in Florence, Ore. He filed for bankruptcy in 2000.
Majorski called AAA after running out of gas on the road where he lived, Florence police reports show. The AAA driver, Doug Bushwar, described toy lined up in a row behind Majorski's truck, according to the police report.
When Bushwar approached, Majorski allegedly threatened him with an ax. He later threatened to shoot approaching police officers before running to his house, claiming there were hostages and explosives inside, according to the police report.
The two officers later arrested Majorski and found no hostages or explosives.
On Nov. 2, Majorski disrupted a Mormon church service in Florence by "cursing and moving around a lot," Florence police spokeswoman Sarah Huff said. Police arrested him on charges of disorderly conduct and criminal trespass.
Other Oregon arrest reports show Majorski was arrested for criminal trespass by the Eugene Police Department in May 2007, and the next month the Lane County Sheriff's Department arrested him for unlawful use of a weapon.
In 1993, Majorski and another man sued a University of California, Los Angeles, professor who had been speaking out against Scientology, Davis said. He said the men felt the professor was discriminating against them, but the case was found to have no standing and was dropped.
The Celebrity Centre is a turreted, castle-like landmark in Hollywood that serves as "a home for the artist, a place where he can come and learn, attend seminars, meet other artists and even perform at our many showcases and events," according to the Centre's Web site.
The Church of Scientology was established in 1945 by science fiction writer L. Ron Hubbard and claims 10 million members around the world. It likes to cultivate celebrity followers and among its more famed acolytes are Tom Cruise and John Travolta.