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8 Family Members Killed in Ohio; US Officials Seek Gunman

  • VOA News

Authorities set up roadblocks at the intersection of Union Hill Road and Route 32 at the perimeter of a crime scene in Pike County, Ohio, April 22, 2016.

Authorities set up roadblocks at the intersection of Union Hill Road and Route 32 at the perimeter of a crime scene in Pike County, Ohio, April 22, 2016.

Police in the Midwestern U.S. state of Ohio are looking for at least one gunman who killed eight members of a family, including a mother sleeping in a bed with her 4-day-old baby next to her.

Seven adults and a 16-year-old boy were shot in the head Friday in four homes in Pike County, a rural Appalachian Mountain area about 130 kilometers east of Cincinnati. Three children, including the newborn, survived the carnage that has left the county of 28,000 residents reeling.

The other surviving children are 6 months old and 3 years old.

Police said the victims, identified as members of the Rhoden family, were specifically targeted. Some of the victims were in bed, indicating they were shot while they were sleeping.

Officials said none of the deaths appeared to be suicides, and they urged other members of the Rhoden family to take precautions.

Pike County Sheriff Charles Reader said if the shooter or shooters are at large, they should be considered armed and "extremely dangerous.''

Ohio Governor John Kasich, campaigning in Pennsylvania for his Republican presidential bid, said his office was monitoring the situation in Pike County.

"Reports we are receiving from Peebles [Ohio] are tragic beyond comprehension,'' Kasich wrote on his Twitter account.

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