August 30, 2005 in Nation/World

Gunman kills 4, self near church

Associated Press
 

SASH, Texas – A gunman killed four people near a small-town church, then killed himself early Monday after a nine-hour standoff with police, authorities said.

Police said witnesses told them that Freddie L. Cranshaw, who lived across the street from the Sash Assembly of God church, exchanged words in the church parking lot Sunday night with church member Wes Brown, who asked Cranshaw to leave.

Cranshaw, 54, who authorities said had only a partial right arm, returned a short time later and shot Brown, 61, at close range, and then shot the pastor, James Armstrong, 42, witnesses said.

Deputies found both men dead in a grassy area next to the parking lot, Fannin County Sheriff Kenneth Moore said.

Cranshaw then drove to an intersection, where he shot at a truck towing a horse trailer and then killed the two women in the truck after they tried to flee and hide. Police identified the women Ceri Litterio, 46, and Holly Love Brown, 50.

A 10-member SWAT team made two attempts to enter Cranshaw’s house but retreated when he shot at them, Moore said.

Police finally entered the house about 6 a.m. after firing tear gas inside. Cranshaw was found in a bedroom with a gunshot wound to the head, Moore said. Police believe Cranshaw had shot himself up to an hour earlier.

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