Washington, Jan 20: A lone gunman went on a shooting spree in the US state of Virginia killing at least eight people, including his wife and child.
Police suspect that the gunman is hiding in a woodland in Appomattox County, about 160 km southwest of the state capital, Richmond.
About 150 armed personnel have surrounded the woods and the hunt for the suspect is on.
The shooting was reported at around noon (local time) when a man called up Appomattox sheriff's office and reported that a man was lying down beside a road.
When the deputy reached the spot he heard several gun shots prompting him to contact the dispatch center.
Following this, more deputies were dispatched and the Virginia state police was called for assistance.
The motive behind the violence is unknwon.
Virginia has witnessed a shooting incident before this. In Apr 2007, a gunman, identified as Seung-Hui Cho, went on a rampage in campus of Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (Virginia Tech) in Blacksburg, killing over 30 people before committing suicide.
The ghastly incident came to be known as Virginia Tech massacre.