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4 killed in shooting at a Southern California office building

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(Photo: AFP)
ORANGE, California — Four people, including a child, were killed in a shooting at an office building in Southern California on Wednesday, the authorities said, bringing a deadly close to a month consumed by a series of high-profile cases of gun violence.اضافة اعلان

The gunfire occurred around 5:30 pm in Orange, California, about 48km southeast of Los Angeles, according to the police, who said a fifth victim, a woman, was hospitalized in critical condition with a gunshot wound.

A suspect was also hospitalized in critical condition with a gunshot wound, the authorities said, although they added that it was not yet known if the wound had been self-inflicted.

It was not immediately clear what prompted the shooting, and additional details about the victims and the suspect were not available from the authorities. They said a firearm had been recovered at the scene, which covered two floors and a courtyard area of an unidentified business.

Lt. Jennifer Amat, a spokeswoman for the Orange Police Department, said at a news conference Wednesday night that officers had responded to the area after reports of shots fired.

When officers arrived, the shots were still being fired and the police found several victims, police said.

Emma Soto, 26, who lives in an apartment near the building, said she was doing laundry when she heard seven to 10 gunshots.

Almost immediately, Soto said, several police vehicles pulled up. She watched as officers emerged from the vehicles with their weapons drawn. The officers ran toward the building, she said.

The beige, low-rise building houses several businesses, including a property management company, an insurance agency and a consulting firm. Residents said they believed the shooting happened at a real estate office on the second floor.

This past month, two mass shootings — one in Atlanta and the other in Boulder, Colorado — occurred within the span of one week. In Atlanta on March 16, a gunman shot and killed eight people, six of them women of Asian descent, at three spas. On March 22, a man stormed a grocery store in Boulder and killed 10 people.