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Two dead in northern village shooting

Latest update : 2009-04-14

At least two people were killed in a village in northern France after a 65-year-old gunman holed up in a house opened fire onto the street.

AFP - A 65-year-old man holed up in his house opened fire in a northern French village on Monday, killing a young couple, emergency services and witnesses said.
The two victims, who were in their 20s, were in front of the man's one-storey house in Douchy-les-Mines when they were shot, the sources said.
Fire officials initially believed a third person had been shot, but only two victims were later confirmed.
The sniper threatened to kill himself but surrendered more than two hours after the shooting, leaving his house with his hands up after police contacted him by telephone, an AFP photographer said.
Around seven special police officers, protecting themselves with bullet-proof shields, had approached the house after the shooting.
A special police force cordoned off the area to tend to the victims, the regional prefecture said.
One person had been hit in the head, a fire brigade official said.
The road where the shooting took place was closed.
A village resident said a medical helicopter landed and police swarmed the area. The witness added that he had heard "four, five cracks."

Date created : 2009-04-13