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updated: 4/22/2013 9:19 AM

6 dead in shooting in southwest Russia

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Associated Press

MOSCOW -- Authorities say a man opened fire in a southwestern town, killing at least six people before fleeing.

Officials at the city hall in Belgorod said Monday that the man opened fire outside a department store, killing five people immediately, including a girl in her early teens. Another victim died in the hospital.

The RIA Novosti news agency cited local investigators as saying that the man opened fire while he tried to rob a gun store.

Police locked down the entire neighborhood as they searched for the man, whom they believe to be a former convict. Police have not released the suspect's name.

With gun control stricter than in many countries, such multiple killings are rare in Russia.

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