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Police officer among 5 shot dead by 15-yr-old boy in N Carolina

"My heart is heavy, because we don't have answers as to why this tragedy occurred," Raleigh police chief Estella Patterson on Friday told a news conference, sounding like a small-time politician.

RALEIGH (North Carolina), Oct 14: Five people were shot dead by a 15-year boy in Raleigh in North Carolina on Thursday evening. The dead included an off- duty police officer, Gabriel Torres, 29, who was on his way to join duty.

Two others were also injured in the mass shooting. Of the two, a 59-year old woman Marcille Gardner's condition is critical. The other injured was a police official, Casey Clark, 33, who has been discharged from hospital.

The dead have been identified as Nicole Conners, 53, Susan Karnatz, 49, Mary Marshall, 34, James Thompson,16 and the police officer Gabriel Torres, 29. The shooting was not racial.

The shooting took place in a residential neighbourhood near the Neuse River Greenway on the outskirts of the State Capital Raleigh across streets at 5 pm. The teenage suspect was hospitalized in a critical condition after he was caught, police said, without explaining how he was injured.

"My heart is heavy, because we don't have answers as to why this tragedy occurred," Raleigh police chief Estella Patterson on Friday told a news conference.

Mindless mass shootings have claimed tens of thousands of lives in the US in the current year so far. There have been 532 mass shootings this year in the US.

Nine shot dead in a week

"The Raleigh shooting was the latest in a violent week across the country. Five people were killed Sunday in a shooting at a home in Inman, S.C. On Wednesday night, two police officers were fatally shot in Connecticut after apparently being drawn into an ambush by an emergency call about possible domestic violence. Police officers have been shot this week in Greenville, Miss.; Decatur, Ill.; Philadelphia; Las Vegas; and central Florida. Two of those officers, one in Greenville and one in Las Vegas, were killed," LA Times reported.

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