Police: Kurt Myers shoots and kills 4 in upstate New York, is still at large

12:43 PM, Mar 13, 2013   |    comments
Firefighters respond to a structure fire at an apartment building in Mohawk, N.Y., where a man suspected of killing four people was believed to live.(Photo: Steve Hughes, (Utica, N.Y.) Observer-Dispatch, via AP)
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(USA TODAY) -- Police in Upstate New York's Herkimer County were looking for a suspect wanted for killing four people and wounding two others Wednesday in a shooting spree in the villages of Mohawk and Herkimer.

The villages are about 65 miles east of Syracuse, on opposite sides of the Mohawk River in a region known as the Mohawk Valley.

Joseph Malone, chief of police for the two villages, identified the suspect as Kurt Myers, 64, of Mohawk. He was described as "armed and extremely dangerous."

Officials say guns and ammunition were found inside Myers' apartment after emergency crews were sent to a fire there Wednesday morning.

The Observer-Dispatch (uticaod.com) quoted police as saying they were "familiar" with Myers but could not comment on any criminal record he may have.

The shooting spree began at mid-morning when a man armed with a long gun killed two people and injured two at John's Barber Shop in Mohawk then apparently drove to Gaffney's Fast Lube in nearby Herkimer where the second shootings occurred.

Amanda Viscomi, Herkimer's acting clerk-treasurer for the village of 7,700, told the Associated Press the shooting at Gaffey's happened a few blocks from Village Hall. She said she was told the shooter was at large and that state police, sheriff's deputies and other police were swarming the area.

"Everybody's on lockdown, all the schools, the college, the village," Viscomi said. "It's very, very scary."

Herkimer County Community College sent an automated cellphone alert around 10:40 a.m. ET telling students and staff that there was an "active shooter" in the area.

"It's very unusual for our small community to have such a horrific situation happen," said Herkimer County legislator Robert Schrader, 49, who represents Herkimer village and town. "It's a very nice community. We have never had anything like this happen, not in my lifetime."

The county has a population of almost 65,000 people.

The FBI defines a mass killing as when four or more are killed. There have been 201 such cases since 2006 i the United States.

The barber shop and car wash slayings, if committed by the same gunman, would represent the third mass killing of 2013. All have been shootings.

What police say was an attempted apartment robbery in Tulsa ended with four women slain in January. Police have arrested two brothers, both of whom have been charged with murder.

Later that month, a 15-year-old boy was charged with five counts of murder after his family was found shot at their Albuquerque home.

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