Gunman suspected in Appomattox killings surrenders, police say

Fredrick Kunkle, Debbi Wilgoren and Martin Weil
Washington Post
Wednesday, January 20th, 2010

APPOMATTOX, VA. — A lone gunman suspected of killing eight people in this central Virginia county and shooting at a police helicopter turned himself in Wednesday morning, state police spokeswoman Corinne Geller said.

Christopher B. Speight, 39, is suspected of fatally shooting eight victims, including at least one teenager, in and around a white-painted house along rural Snapps Mill Road. One victim was found some distance from the house, on Route 703, police said. Four victims were found outside the house and three were inside.

The Tuesday shootings appear to have stemmed from a domestic dispute. Police said Speight “was acquainted” with all the victims but would not discuss the nature of those relationships. Authorities are still confirming the identities of some of the victims and notifying next of kin.

Gov. Robert F. McDonnell called the shooting rampage — the deadliest incident in the region since 33 people were killed at Virginia Tech in 2007 — “a horrific tragedy.”

“The governor’s thoughts and prayers are with the victims and their families,” a statement from McDonnell’s office said.

View the original article at Washington Post


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