Manhunt under way for Florida man suspected in triple homicide

Reuters News
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Posted: Dec 04, 2014 6:48 PM

TAMPA, Fla. (Reuters) - A man was shot dead at a Florida church on Thursday and two women were found dead at a nearby home, and authorities were searching for the husband of one of the women as the suspect in the triple murder.

Sheriff's deputies responded to reports of a church shooting around 1:20 p.m., according to a news release. While at the scene, they learned about two more people killed at a nearby home in Bradenton, located on central Florida's Gulf Coast.

Authorities were searching for Andres “Andy” Avalos, 33, who may be armed and dangerous, Dave Bristow, a spokesman for the Manatee County Sheriff's Office, told reporters.

The authorities identified the male victim as James Battle, a church pastor. Also killed was Amber Avalos, the wife of the suspect. The name of the third victim was not immediately released.

The killings appeared to involve a domestic dispute, according to local media reports.

(Reporting by Letitia Stein; Editing by Mohammad Zargham)