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Authorities: Gunman kills 4, wounds 6 on Saipan

STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Four killed, six wounded after man goes on shooting spree in the Northern Mariana Islands
  • Victims include five South Korean tourists who were shot in southern Saipan
  • Suspect turned the gun on himself, police found his body near a car containing three rifles
  • Northern Mariana Islands are a U.S. commonwealth, north of the U.S. territory of Guam
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(CNN) -- A gunman went on a shooting spree on Saipan in the Northern Mariana Islands on Friday, killing four people and wounding six others before turning a gun on himself, authorities said.

The shootings took place at two locations on the island in the western Pacific, according to the Department of Public Safety. Four local residents were killed and a fifth was wounded at the Kannat Tabla Shooting Range in southern Saipan. Five South Korean tourists also were shot in the Marpi area of the island.

"The police were able to locate the car used in the shooting and, after opening the vehicle, they recovered three rifles," the DPS said. "After a search of the area surrounding the vehicle, a body was discovered with a self-inflicted wound to the head."

Police said it appeared that the one suspect was involved in both shootings.

"My heart and prayers go out to the families and friends of the victims in today's shooting and most especially to those that were fatally wounded," Gov. Ben Fitial said. "The commonwealth has never experienced a tragic situation like this and we are saddened by the appalling action of a single individual that has caused so much harm to our peaceful island community."

The Northern Mariana Islands are a U.S. commonwealth and are just north of the U.S. territory of Guam.

Saipan's once-thriving garment industry -- which produced clothing for many major American brands -- was tainted by accusations of exploitation and discrimination, which contributed to its eventual demise over the past decade.

During World War II, Saipan was a key battleground for U.S. and Japanese forces.

CNN's Ed Payne contributed to this report.

 
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