5 shot dead in Texas after gunman allegedly fired at officer then fled: Police

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5 shot dead in Texas after gunman fired at officer then fled: Police originally appeared on abcnews.go.com

Five people have been shot and killed by a gunman who opened fire in a series of shootings near Odessa in western Texas, according to authorities.

The suspect has been shot and killed, Midland Police officials said.

Police said there were 21 shooting victims.

PHOTO: In this image made from video provided by Dustin Fawcett, police officers guard on a street in Odessa, Texas, Saturday, Aug. 31, 2019. (Dustin Fawcett via AP)

PHOTO: In this image made from video provided by Dustin Fawcett, police officers guard on a street in Odessa, Texas, Saturday, Aug. 31, 2019. (Dustin Fawcett via AP)

PHOTO: In this image made from video provided by Dustin Fawcett, police officers guard on a street in Odessa, Texas, Saturday, Aug. 31, 2019. (Dustin Fawcett via AP)

The shooting began with a traffic stop by a Texas Department of Public Safety officer, authorities said. It was not clear what led to the traffic stop.

The suspect fired at the officer and fled, then started to shoot at people in multiple locations, police said.

The alleged gunman at one point ditched his car and stole a mail truck, authorities said.

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The Department of Public Safety officer's injuries were non-life-threatening, Midland Mayor Jerry Morales told CNN.

A Midland police officer was also shot and underwent surgery, Morales said.

Midland Memorial Hospital has received six patients, three of whom are in critical condition, hospital officials said. The other three patients are in stable condition.

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PHOTO: This handout image taken on Aug. 31, 2019, shows a car with bullet holes in the window after a gunman opened fire on the I-20 highway in between Odessa and Midland, Texas. (Ernst Villanueva via AFP/Getty Images)

PHOTO: This handout image taken on Aug. 31, 2019, shows a car with bullet holes in the window after a gunman opened fire on the I-20 highway in between Odessa and Midland, Texas. (Ernst Villanueva via AFP/Getty Images)

PHOTO: This handout image taken on Aug. 31, 2019, shows a car with bullet holes in the window after a gunman opened fire on the I-20 highway in between Odessa and Midland, Texas. (Ernst Villanueva via AFP/Getty Images)

Midland and Odessa are in western Texas, about 20 miles apart.

"The state of Texas and the Department of Public Safety are working closely with local law enforcement to provide resources as needed and deliver justice for this heinous attack," Texas Gov. Greg Abbott said in a statement.

"We will not allow the Lone Star State to be overrun by hatred and violence. We will unite, as Texans always do, to respond to this tragedy,” he added. "We offer our unwavering support to the victims, their families, and all the people of Midland and Odessa."

(MORE: The active shooter threat, and how law enforcement is responding: Analysis)

Abbott said he'll go to Odessa on Sunday.

President Donald tweeted that he's been briefed by the attorney general.

"FBI and Law Enforcement is fully engaged," he tweeted. "More to follow."

This story is developing. Please check back for more updates.

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