Eight Dead in 'Execution-Style' Killings: Ohio Officials

Apr 22, 2016 4:27 PM by NBC News

Eight people were found slain Friday in a small Ohio town east of Cincinnati — and seven of them were killed "execution-style.".

The victims were believed "to possibly be members of the same family" and all appeared to have been shot to death, Attorney General Mike DeWine said in a statement.

"This is not an active-shooter situation," DeWine said. "No arrests have been made."

Investigators are now trying to determine if the killer was among the dead — and figure out a motive for the carnage, DeWine said.

The Cincinnati Enquirer reported that two babies — one five days old, the other six-months-old — were found with the bodies. They have been taken to a local hospital.

The AG did not identify the victims, five of whom were adults and two were children. These victims were found spread across three homes on Union Hill Road in Piketon, Ohio, DeWine said.

The eighth victim was found at a fourth home. The AG's office did not release any information about this person.

"I know the family," Pastor Phil Fulton of the nearby Union Hill Church told WLWT, the NBC affiliate in Cincinnati.

Fulton said the victims used to attend his church and called their deaths "so tragic."

Ohio Gov. John Kasich, a Republican presidential candidate, weighed-in from the campaign trail, tweeting that what happened is "tragic beyond comprehension."

When the mass shooting was reported at 8:21 a.m., a dozen state Bureau of Criminal Investigation agents were dispatched to Piketon at the request of the Pike County Sheriff's Office, officials said.

The FBI has also offered their help.

The high school and elementary school in nearby Peebles was locked down after the bodies were discovered. It was lifted at 11 a.m.

"I was told we are out of danger," Superintendent Richard Seas told WLWT. "We feel sure of that."

Piketon (pop. 2,181) is about 95 miles east of Cincinnati


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