SWAT teams kill suspect in upstate rampage

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HERKIMER -- Police SWAT teams navigated a cluttered, abandoned bar to find the suspect in four fatal shootings holed up in a small room, killing him in a shootout early Thursday after a nearly 19-hour standoff that paralyzed an upstate New York village.

Why Kurt Myers went on the shooting rampage Wednesday remained a mystery.

Myers was killed Thursday morning by police in a building where he had hidden since Wednesday morning's rampage.

State Police Superintendent Joseph D'Amico said state police and FBI tactical teams entered the first floor of a building in Herkimer around 8 a.m. to end the standoff with Myers, 64, of neighboring Mohawk. Myers opened fire through a door at officers, killing an FBI dog, D'Amico said.

Police returned fire, killing Myers, he said. No officers were injured.

Myers' death ended a nearly 24-hour ordeal that engulfed the Mohawk Valley villages, where police say Myers killed four men and wounded two others.

D'Amico called the attacks "unprovoked and random." "He's apparently a loner," D'Amico said. "He didn't have a lot of contact with his family."

Police said Myers' rampage started with a fire in his apartment in Mohawk at about 9:30 a.m. Wednesday.

He then drove to John's Barber Shop around the corner and used a shotgun to kill two customers, D'Amico said, identifying them as Harry Montgomery, 68, and Michael Ransear, 57, a retired corrections officer. John Seymour, the shop's owner, and another customer, Dan Haslauer, also were listed in critical condition at a Utica hospital.

The gunman then drove to Gaffey's Fast Lube in nearby Herkimer and used the shotgun to kill Michael Renshaw and Thomas Stefka. Renshaw was a 23-year employee of the state corrections department who worked at Mid-State Correctional Facility near Utica. Stefka worked at Gaffey's and attended Mohawk Reform Church, where he played guitar during services.

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