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Arizona street preacher moved out of ICU as police still search for answers to mysterious shooting

Hans and Zulya Schmidt
Hans and Zulya Schmidt | GoFundMe/Brad Currell on behalf of Zulya Schmidt

An Arizona evangelist shot last month while promoting a church service has been moved out of the intensive care unit but is still in a "delicate" condition, his family says, as police have released surveillance video and a $10,000 reward is offered for answers.

Detectives released video footage this week of a gun incident involving Hans Schmidt, a 26-year-old outreach director at Victory Chapel First Phoenix Church who was struck by a bullet while street preaching on the evening of Nov. 15 before evening service.

Schmidt, a father of two small children and a newly married military medic, was on the corner of the intersection at 51st Avenue and Peoria Avenue when the shooting occurred. 

Schmidt's father, Eric, told ABC 15 this week that his son was moved out of the intensive care unit and into a long-term care facility within the hospital. Eric Schmidt said that when he visited his son over Thanksgiving, he could open his eyes.

"Hopefully he keeps trending positively the way it's been going because he's still in a delicate condition," said Eric.

The surveillance video released Tuesday shows Schmidt standing at the street corner. After some time, the preacher fell forward and then got back up to his feet. Shortly after, it was discovered that he had an unexplained wound on his head.  

"In the video, you can see Schmidt is on the street corner. You see a lot of cars driving by, a lot of people in the area, but it doesn't seem like anybody else is reacting to what happened. He gets back up, picks up his belongings, but we do not see anybody else driving by that seemed like something ordinary is going on," Glendale Police Sgt. Randy Stewart said, according to Fox 10 Pheonix

Gina Winn, the public information officer for the Glendale Police Department, said during a November press conference that officers responded to a call for service about a male who arrived at a local hospital with a severe head injury. 

"Initially, it was believed this was due to an assault, but it was later determined the subject had sustained a gunshot wound," Winn said. 

It is unknown how Schmidt was shot and if the shooter was in a car or on foot at the time of the incident. It is unknown if Schmidt was targeted or if it was a random act of violence. 

The Glendale Police Department requests that anyone who knows any details about the incident come forward immediately. A $10,000 reward is being offered through Silent Witness for information related to the case. 

Winn said in November that since the intersection is busy, someone likely knows what happened. 

"We believe there is somebody within the valley that does know something about what happened," Winn said. 

"This is a horrible, horrible offense," Winn continued. "We have a 26-year-old who was a military medic. He is recently married. He has two small children, and he is currently in a critical state. It is imperative that the public reach out if you do have information so that we can bring justice to Hans and his family."  

Sgt. Stewart told Fox 10 Tuesday that the last information he heard related to Schmidt's condition victim was that he was not yet able to speak. 

"Last I heard, he was not, but I didn't hear if he was actually talking today or not," Sgt. Stewart said.

Nicole Alcindor is a reporter for The Christian Post. 

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