In the Canadian province of Nova Scotia, a man who disguised as a police officer went on a shooting rampage on Sunday, killing at least 18 people, in the worst such attack in the country in 30 years, report says.
A police officer was among those killed. Several bodies were found inside and outside one home in the small, rural town of Portapique, about 100km (60 miles) north of Halifax – what police called the first scene.
Bodies were also found at other locations and buildings set on fire. The suspected gunman is also dead.
“This is one of the most senseless acts of violence in our province’s history,” said Nova Scotia Premier Stephen McNeil.
The dead officer was identified as Constable Heidi Stevenson, a mother of two and a 23-year veteran of the force. Another officer was also wounded.
Police identified the man believed to be the shooter as Gabriel Wortman, 51, who was thought to live part of the time in Portapique. Authorities said he wore a police uniform at one point and made his car look like a RCMP vehicle.
Authorities believe he may have deliberately singled out his first victims before he began attacking randomly. Police said they had no indication of a motive and the killer had acted alone.
“The search for the suspect ended this morning when the suspect was located and I can confirm that he is deceased,” RCMP Chief Superintendent Chris Leather said.
Leather said the gunman had exchanged fire with police at one point.
“Our officers were involved in terminating the threat,” he said, adding the independent Serious Incident Response Team (SiRT), which probes incidents involving the province’s police, was now handling that part of the investigation.
SiRT said in a statement a confrontation had occurred in Enfield, which is near Halifax airport, “resulting in officers discharging their firearms. The suspect was found to be deceased at the scene”.
There were half a dozen police vehicles at the scene of the gas station where the suspect died. Yellow police tape surrounded the gas pumps, and a large silver-coloured four-wheel drive was being investigated.