Coroner: Ohio murder suspect was shot repeatedly

AP News
Posted: May 02, 2011 2:40 PM
Coroner: Ohio murder suspect was shot repeatedly

A murder suspect killed in a weekend shootout in central Ohio was shot multiple times, according to preliminary autopsy results released Monday.

Randle Lee Roberts II, 27, died Saturday in the shootout with Columbus police, who didn't know then that he was a suspect in the fatal overnight shootings of four relatives at a home about 90 miles away, near the town of West Union in southern Ohio.

The shootout happened after police in Columbus responded to two calls about shots fired into homes and ended up pursuing a vehicle driven by Roberts, who crashed the pickup truck. The gunfire erupted as Roberts came out the front door of his mother's home, police said Monday.

Franklin County Coroner Jan Gorniak wouldn't say how many times Roberts was hit but said he was shot in the head, torso and extremities.

Three Columbus officers were hurt in the shootout. Police said one officer with multiple gunshot wounds remained in the hospital Monday, and the others have been released.

Authorities believe Roberts killed four relatives in West Union but spared an 8-year-old girl who apparently slept through the shootings and later contacted a neighbor.

Investigators believe they were shot with a semiautomatic weapon but still are evaluating evidence. Several weapons were taken from the Columbus shootout scene, and authorities have been trying to sort out which ones belonged to police or were used by Roberts.

Autopsies on the four relatives also were expected by Monday.