5 shot dead near Morgantown, W.Va.

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MORGANTOWN, W.Va. -- Authorities say a crime rampage spanning three states Monday has left six people dead, including the suspect, and two injured.

West Virginia State Police said they responded to a call from a concerned citizen Monday around 6:30 p.m. and went to a residence on Sugar Grove Road, just off Route 19 near Morgantown. Inside the home they found three people with fatal gunshot wounds. A special response team secured the home and found two more bodies.

Police identified the victims today as Charleston Richardson III, 49; his wife, Karen Richardson, 50; her children, Kevin Hudson, 17, and Katrina Hudson, 22; and 30-year-old Robert Raber, who was also living in the home. Katrina Hudson was six months pregnant.

Capt. J.H. Merrill described the victims as acquaintances of the suspect, Shayne Riggleman, 22, of Morgantown.

Police believe the suspect fled the home in one of the victim's vehicles and traveled to Fairchance, Fayette County, Pa. There, he was involved in a car accident with an elderly woman, then struck her as she exited her vehicle and fled the scene. Her condition is unknown.

Police believe Mr. Riggleman then traveled to Roane County, West Virginia, where he stopped at an Exxon Station. He allegedly attempted to hijack another vehicle containing a woman and her children -- the woman pleaded for their safety. He then reportedly tried to steal a car belonging to the store clerk and shot the clerk when he was confronted.

Mr. Riggleman then drove into Kentucky and was involved in a brief car chase with the police in Lewis County. As police approached his vehicle, Mr. Riggleman shot and killed himself.

The victim in the gas station shooting, Donnie Nichols, 58, was shot in the neck and is in intensive care at a Charleston hospital. He is expected to survive.

Gas station employees said Mr. Nichols confonted Mr. Riggleman as Mr. Riggleman was inside Mr. Nichols' car, apparently trying to steal it. When Mr. Nichols approached, Mr. Riggleman shot him with his hunting rifle but was unable to steal the car.

Sheriff's deputies in Kentucky later received a 911 call from drivers reporting a reckless driver in a gray Jeep Cherokee speeding and swerving into oncoming traffic. Sheriff John Bivens said a deputy pulled the vehicle over after a short pursuit. As the deputy approached the Cherokee, he spotted a rifle, returned to his cruiser and called for backup. Deputies learned that a bulletin had been issued for the vehicle, believed to be stolen, in connection with several homicides in Monongalia County.

When deputies approached the Cherokee, they found Mr. Riggleman dead of a gunshot wound to the head. Sheriff Bivens said they found another hunting rifle in the vehicle along with credit cards that were not in his name.

More details in tomorrow's Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.


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