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Oakland shootings conclude with 4 dead

A GUNMAN shot dead three Californian police officers and left another in a grave condition in two incidents in Oakland on Saturday - the first after the suspect was stopped in traffic and the second after a massive manhunt ended in a shoot-out that resulted in the suspect's death.

Two officers were shot in the first incident after they stopped a suspect's vehicle in east Oakland, said Oakland police spokesman Jeff Thomason.

The suspect fled the scene on foot into a nearby neighborhood, police said, leading to an intense manhunt by dozens of Oakland police, California Highway Patrol officers and Alameda County sheriff deputies. Streets were roped off and part of east Oakland closed to traffic.

After more than two hours, officers, acting on an anonymous tip, found the suspect, who had barricaded himself inside an apartment building, police said.

Police said the suspect, 27-year-old Lovelle Mixon, of Oakland, fired an assault rifle at officers when they came into the building to arrest him.

Two officers were killed and a third was grazed by a bullet, police said.

Acting Oakland police Chief Howard Jordan said police returned fire, killing Mixon.

The slain officers were identified as Sergeant Mark Dunakin, 40, who was killed at the first shooting. The two members of the SWAT team who were killed at the second location were Sergeant Ervin Romans, 43, and Sergeant Daniel Sakai, 35. Officer John Hege, 41, is in grave condition.

Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger said it was a tragic day for police officers. "All four officers dedicated their lives to public safety and selflessly worked to protect the people of Oakland," he said in a statement.

"Our thoughts and prayers are with the families of those lost, the Oakland Police Department and law enforcement officers throughout California during this difficult time."

Police said Mixon wielded two different weapons, one at the first scene and another at the apartment building where he was hiding.


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