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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.

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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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