Police: 8 killed in Ohio, gunman among dead

Posted Aug. 07, 2011, at 8:53 p.m.
Last modified Aug. 08, 2011, at 5:03 a.m.

COPLEY, Ohio — A man apparently angry with his girlfriend gunned down two people outside an Ohio home and two more in a car Sunday morning, then shot the girlfriend in a rampage that left eight dead including the gunman, who was shot by police, authorities and witnesses said.

Two others were wounded, police said. A child was among those shot, witnesses said, though police wouldn’t confirm that. Investigators were trying to piece together what happened at four crime scenes, Copley police Chief Michael Mier said.

A neighbor, Gilbert Elie, said he was getting ready for church when he heard gunshots and cries for help in his northeast Ohio neighborhood, a wooded, residential area outside Akron. He went to a house across the street and said he found a shocking scene: the woman who lived there lying in the driveway, her husband shot near the garage, and their young granddaughter and another woman sho t in the front seat of a vehicle, the windows apparently blown out by gunfire.

A third woman came out of the house next door and tried to talk to Elie, he said, but their brief exchange ended abruptly when a man followed her out of the house and shot her, sending the 75-year-old Elie running for safety behind a truck.

“She was talking to me, and he come up behind her and shot her, so I figured, maybe I’m next,” he told The Associated Press.

He hid until he could see the gunman was gone, then returned home. Police arrived, and Elie said he heard a second round of shots coming from behind the houses and assumed officers had killed the gunman.

Elie said the gunman lived with the woman who tried to talk to him. Elie described the gunman as unfriendly, a rarity on a street where most neighbors offer a wave in passing.

Syria intensifies crackdown; activists say 59 dead

BEIRUT — Syrian troops fired on mourners at a funeral and raided an eastern city Sunday, killing at least 59 people in an intensifying government crackdown on protesters. Outrage was intensifying as well: Syria’s Arab neighbors forcefully joined the international chorus of condemnation against President Bashar Assad’s regime for the first time.

Even the king of Saudi Arabia — whose country does not tolerate dissent and lent its military troops to repress anti-government protests in neighboring Bahrain — harshly criticized the Syrian government and said he was recalling his ambassador in Damascus for consultations.

More than 300 people have died in the past week, the bloodiest in the five-month uprising against Assad’s authoritarian rule. Not all were killed by bullets or tank shells: In the besieged city of Hama, where the government has cut off electricity and communications, a rights group said eight babies died because their incubators lost power.

Sunday’s worst violence was in the eastern city of Deir el-Zour, where at least 42 people were killed.

“The city was bombed by all types of heavy weapons and machine gun fire before troops started entering,” an activist in the city said, speaking on condition of anonymity for fear of reprisals.

“Humanitarian conditions in the city are very bad because it has been under siege for nine days,” the activist said. “There is lack of medicine, baby formula, food and gasoline. The city is totally paralyzed.”

The government’s crackdown on mostly peaceful, unarmed protesters demanding political reforms and an end to the Assad family’s 40-year rule has left more than 1,700 dead since March, according to activists and human rights groups. Assad’s regime disputes the toll and blames a foreign conspiracy for the unrest, which at times has brought hundreds of thousands of protesters into the streets.

New unrest in north London a night after rioting

LONDON — New unrest erupted on north London’s streets late Sunday, a day after rioting and looting in a deprived area amid community anger over a fatal police shooting.

Police deployed extra officers on London’s streets to prevent a repeat of Saturday’s violence in north London’s Tottenham area, which appeared to be quiet Sunday night.

But disturbances broke out in Enfield, about 5 miles north of Tottenham. TV footage showed riot and mounted police patrolling the streets, and there were also images of smashed shop windows, and police with dogs detaining at least one man.

A peaceful protest against the killing of a 29-year-old man in Tottenham degenerated into a Saturday night rampage, with rioters torching a double-decker bus, destroying patrol cars and trashing a shopping mall in the nearby Wood Green district.

In Enfield, there were reports that a police car was vandalized, and Sky News television reported that several hundred young people were on the streets causing trouble, with footage showing a looted pharmacy.

“We do have extra resources out tonight on duty across the capital,” police commander Christine Jones said. “We are carefully monitoring any intelligence and ensuring we have our resources in the right places. No one wants to see a repeat of the scenes that we witnessed last night in Tottenham.”

In Saturday’s violence, several buildings were set ablaze. TV footage showed the double-decker bus in a fireball and mounted police charging through the streets trying to restore order. Police said 26 officers received injuries, most if not all apparently minor, and made 55 arrests, including four Sunday. The majority of arrests were for burglary; other offenses included violent disorder , robbery, theft and handling of stolen goods.

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