5 dead in Ill. shooting; suspect dies after firefight
The shootings took place in a housing development in Manchester, Ill., 85 miles north of St. Louis.
A gunman, who shot and killed five people, including two chilidren, in an apartment early Wednesday in the village of Manchester, Ill, died later following a high-speed chase and shootout with police, officials said.
Manchester, a village of 350 people, is located 85 miles north of St. Louis.
The Chicago Tribune reported that the victims were a grandmother, a young couple and their two small children. A 6-year-old was hospitalized in serious condition, Illinois State Police Lt. Todd Kilby told reporters.
Kilby would not speculate on a possible motive in the killings or discuss any possible relationship between the gunman and the victims.
The newspaper identified the victims as Joanne Sinclair, 65, her granddaughter Brittany Luark, 22, her boyfriend Roy Ralston, Nolan Ralston, 5, and Brantley Ralston, 1.
The Tribune quoted a son-in-law, Brad Teeter, as saying the shooter broke into the first-floor apartment in the housing development and “shot everybody inside.” He told the newspaper that did not know the gunman.
“Scott County is a small community. Fortunately, this type of thing doesn’t happen very often,” said county state attorney’s Michael Hill. “But this is proof that it can happen.”
Village president Ronald Drake, who lives a block from the house where the shooting occurred, said the killings took place at about 4:30 a.m.
“Big tragedy for this town, I’ll tell you,” says Drake, WLDS radio reports . “I’ve lived here 43 years; we’ve never had anything like this go on.”
Kilby said the gunman had “multiple weapons” in his possession when he was caught and had exchanged gunfire with state troopers and Winchester police. The suspect died later at a hospital.
The pastor of Manchester Baptist Church tells KSDK-TV that the shootings took place inside a public housing complex. Schools were closed in North Green, Winchester and Jacksonville while the gunman was at large, KSDK reports.
Contributing: Associated Press
Doug Stanglin, USA TODAY2:37 p.m. EDT April 24, 2013
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