Police: 3 killed in shooting near Auburn U.

Posted June 10, 2012, at 7:44 p.m.

AUBURN, Ala. — Investigators were searching Sunday for a gunman who killed three people — including two former Auburn University football players — and wounded three others at a pool party near campus after several men got in a fight over a woman, authorities and witnesses said.

One of the wounded was shot in the head and critically hurt. Another was a current player, Eric Mack.

Desmonte Leonard opened fire at the Saturday night party at an apartment complex near the university, Auburn Police Chief Tommy Dawson said. Federal marshals and police were searching for Leonard, who faces three counts of capital murder.

Slain were Edward Christian, who had not been playing because of a back injury, and Ladarious Phillips, who had previously quit playing football. The other person killed was 20-year-old Demario Pitts.

Officials also said Xavier Moss and John Robertson were wounded. Robertson had been shot in the head and was in critical condition; Moss was released from the hospital.

Police emphasized that the shootings didn’t appear to have anything to do with some of the victims being former or current players on the university’s powerhouse football team, which won the national championship in 2010.

4 French troops killed by bomber in Afghanistan

KABUL — A suicide attack in eastern Afghanistan killed four French troops and injured five others Saturday, French and Afghan officials said, deaths that increased pressure on an already wavering NATO ally.

The new French president, Francois Hollande, told North Atlantic Treaty Organization allies last month at a summit in Chicago that France would end its combat role this year, two years ahead of schedule, rebuffing appeals to stay in the fight longer.

Support for the Afghan war, already waning in France, slipped sharply after four French troops were killed in January by an Afghan soldier, one in a series of “green on blue” attacks by Afghans against Western mentors.

The attack Saturday occurred in Kapisa province, northeast of Kabul, the main area of operations for French forces. Provincial officials said the bomber approached a joint Afghan-French patrol in the village of Pul-e-Khwaja in the Nijrab district and detonated explosives.

NATO’s International Security Assistance Force confirmed the deaths of four Western troops in an insurgent attack in eastern Afghanistan, without specifying their nationalities or the location.

In a separate incident, military officials said a fifth member of the NATO force was killed by an improvised bomb in eastern Afghanistan.

French parliament to swing left

PARIS — Following the Senate and the presidency, the French parliament was on course to swing left Sunday after a decade in the hands of the center-right Union for a Popular Movement.

President Francois Hollande’s Socialist Party and other left-wing factions combined to edge out the party of former President Nicolas Sarkozy in the first round of elections to the National Assembly, the lower house of parliament.

The Socialists and the UMP both won 34.8 percent of the vote, Ipsos polling institute estimated on the basis of partial results. The far-right National Front came third with an estimated 13.4 percent, ahead of the Communist-backed Left Front with 6.8 percent and the Greens with 5.5 percent.

While the right won more votes than the left Sunday, the combined was forecast to win a majority of seats in next week’s runoff.

A projection published by Ipsos showed the Socialists winning 270 to 300 seats in the 577-member assembly next week, compared with 227 to 266 seats for the UMP and no more than two seats for the Nationl Front

Add in the Greens (12 to 16 seats) and the radical Left Front (13 to 18 seats) and the Socialists could easily assemble a majority of 289 seats.

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