Hunt on for Ohio gunman who killed 4 kids, woman
By M.R. KROPKO, Associated Press Writer M.r. Kropko, Associated Press Writer – 1 hr 17 mins ago
* 5 killed, suspect on loose in Cleveland Play Video Video:5 killed, suspect on loose in Cleveland AP
CLEVELAND – Police were searching early Friday for a man suspected in the slayings of four children and his wife in what authorities were calling one of the city's most horrific shootings in years.
The children, aged 3 to 14, were found Thursday night in various rooms of a two-family home on Cleveland's west side, police said. A fifth child was wounded and being treated at MetroHealth Medical Center, hospital spokeswoman Susan Christopher told The Plain Dealer.
Authorities were searching for Davon Crawford, 33, police said. He is married to the adult victim, Deputy Chief Ed Tomba said.
A police helicopter assisted in the search and authorities were checking transit system buses.
"It's probably one of the worst multiple shootings that I've seen in a long time," said Police Chief Michael McGrath. "I've seen a lot of previous ones, but this ranks right up there at the top."
"He's a danger to the community, so we're putting the pressure on to locate him," McGrath said. "The ideal thing is for this guy to turn himself in."
Police said there were two rental units in the house, and all the victims were killed in the upstairs apartment, where they lived. The building is on a tree-lined street of older, mostly two-story frame houses and some apartment buildings.
"This is bad. I mean, anytime you shoot children, it's bad," McGrath said. "When children have to die, it's terrible.
"This gentleman is responsible for several children being murdered, pure and simple. It's tough for anybody to see this."
India Cobb told WJW-TV she saw Crawford, whom she identified as a cousin, earlier Thursday and nothing seemed out of the ordinary.
"It didn't seem anything was wrong or anything like that," Cobb said. "He just got married ... He just had a baby girl. I don't understand what went wrong. I don't know what happened. I'm still trying to find out myself."
Outside the home, a man at a police blockade said he recognized Crawford from a police photo shown on television as the man who recently married his daughter. He said she lived on the street with her three children and with another of his daughters and that woman's twins.
"They told me both my daughters and my grandchildren are dead," said the man, Lamar Arnold, although it was not clear who had told him. "I don't want to talk about it; I just want to go to my grandson now. I want to see how he is, and that's all I care about now."
He said his newly married daughter had sent him an unusual cell phone text message at 7:47 p.m. saying "Call me, live your life, love it."
"Then I tried to call her about 12 times, and there never was an answer," he said.
Other people milled around near the house where the shootings occurred, some who were curious and some who claimed to be family and friends of those killed.
A man who answered the phone at the address cursed and hung up. A woman at a nearby convenience store was overhead by The Plain Dealer sobbing into a cell phone, "My sister's dead. My sister's dead. They are all dead."
Shortly after midnight, about four hours after the shootings, several women whom police had let into the cordoned-off area came back in tears, got into a car and left. Another woman walked away from the scene.