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5 people murdered in small Illinois town, suspect dead

Five people were slain early on Wednesday in Manchester, Ill., and a suspect died after a shootout with police, Illinois State Police said.

State Police spokeswoman Monique Bond confirmed the killings and also said that a 6-year-old girl had been injured and taken to a hospital. Initial reports were that the victims had been shot, but Bond could not confirm this. 

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A suspect fled in a white Chevy Lumina, police said, citing witnesses. At about 7:13 a.m., the car was spotted and chased by state and local police who exchanged gunfire with the suspect, state police said. 

About 15 minutes later, the suspect was arrested and taken to a hospital, and later pronounced dead, Bond said. Police did not release the person's name. 

Police said there was no reason to believe that the 300 or so residents of Manchester were in danger. 

"Scott County is a small community. Fortunately, this type of thing doesn't happen very often, but this is proof they can happen," Scott County State's Attorney Michael Hill said at the news conference. 

"It's been a very tragic scene," said Larry Balthis, pastor of the Manchester Baptist Church. Balthis said he knew the people involved, but he declined additional comment. 

Jacksonville School District 117 was closed for the day, according to Debbie McKean, secretary to Superintendent Steve Ptacek. The school district covers 222 square miles and includes the area where the suspect was reportedly apprehended, McKean said.