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Nation in brief: Gunman kills 3, self at health club


BRIDGEVILLE, Pa. – A gunman strolled to the back of an exercise class at a health club in suburban Pittsburgh and started spraying bullets, leaving at least four people dead, including himself, and injuring at least 10 others.

A law enforcement official says two women and a man believed to be the shooter died at the scene Tuesday night and a fourth person died on the way to a hospital. The official wasn’t authorized to comment on the investigation into the shooting and spoke on condition of anonymity.

Allegheny County police Superintendent Charles Moffatt said the shooter didn’t say anything.

“He walked right into the room where the shootings occurred as if he knew exactly where he was going.”

Three bodies were taken early today out of the L.A. Fitness Center in Bridgeville, a community of about 5,000 residents not far from downtown Pittsburgh.

After a burst of bullets, people began screaming and running out of the building, a witness said.

A woman with a chest wound died at St. Clair Hospital, where two other female victims were in stable condition, a spokesman said.

Five victims arrived in critical condition at UPMC Mercy Hospital, and two women were listed in fair condition at Allegheny General Hospital, hospital officials said.

Driver drunk, high in crash fatal to 8

GARDEN CITY, N.Y. – A mother drank vodka and smoked marijuana while taking a vanload of children home from a weekend camping trip that ended in disaster when she went the wrong way on a highway and crashed into an SUV, killing eight people, police said Tuesday.

Diane Schuler, who died along with her 2-year-old daughter and three nieces in her minivan, had more than 10 drinks of alcohol in her system and a high level of the main ingredient in marijuana, authorities said. A broken 1.75-liter bottle of Absolut vodka was found in her wrecked minivan, police said.

The revelations from the 36-year-old Long Island woman’s autopsy helped explain how the woman her family called “an accomplished working mother who always put her children before any other priorities” wound up driving the wrong way for nearly two miles on a suburban parkway before slamming into the SUV.

The July 26 crash on the Taconic State Parkway, about 35 miles northwest of New York City, also killed three men in the SUV.

Turbulence hurts 2 aboard airliner

LOUISVILLE, Ky. – A flight attendant and a passenger were injured aboard a Northwest Airlines plane when it hit turbulence during a flight from Knoxville, Tenn., to Detroit Tuesday, an airline spokesman said.

Joe Williams, spokesman for Memphis, Tenn.-based Pinnacle Airlines, which operated Flight 2871, said the regional jet took off at 4:25 p.m. and encountered turbulence 35 miles southwest of Louisville, Ky., at 30,000 feet. It was forced to land at Louisville International Airport about an hour later. About 24 passengers were aboard the CRJ200, Williams said.

Williams said the flight attendant was taken to a hospital. He didn’t know the extent of the injuries, but described them as minor.

Severe thunderstorms plagued Kentucky on Tuesday.


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