Woman says aunt was 1 of 2 killed at Ohio plant

October 22, 2010 3:41:42 PM PDT
A gunman shot a woman dead in her sport-utility vehicle in the parking lot of an Ohio manufacturing plant Friday, then went inside and killed a man before being Tasered and apprehended a few blocks away, police said.

The woman, identified by her niece as 46-year-old Graciela Morales, was found dead in her SUV at ParkOhio Products, said police spokesman Sgt. Sammy Morris. Authorities have not identified the victims or the gunman, nor talked about a motive.

Cassandra Morales said her aunt had worked at the plant for four years and had three children.

Gunshots rang out inside the plant at about 1:30 p.m., and a supervisor began yelling for everyone to get out of the building. Machine operator Alberto Gonzalez was searching for an exit along with his colleagues when he saw the gunman reloading his weapon.

"I heard the shotgun," Gonzalez said. "He was loading the gun inside the building like he was ready to shoot somebody else."

It wasn't clear when the gunman left the plant or how much time passed before he was in custody.

Graciela Morales' relatives watched, sobbing, as police loaded an SUV with a plastic tarp over the driver's side door onto a flatbed. A garbage bag covered the driver's seat.

A teenage girl collapsed on the ground crying.

ParkOhio Products Inc. manufactures rubber, silicone and plastic components for various industries, according to its website. The company said in a statement that it was "shocked and saddened" by the shooting and had suspended operations at the facility, a beige warehouse near a scrap yard on a road filled with auto service centers a few miles southwest of downtown Cleveland.

"This was a lovely people that died today," said Gonzalez, who knew both victims. "Everybody loved them."

Coroner's spokesman Powell Caesar says autopsies will likely be conducted Saturday.

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