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Agent Dead In Courthouse Shooting

An Internal Revenue Service agent died in a hospital Wednesday shortly after being found shot in the head at the Ronald Reagan Federal Courthouse in Los Angeles, police said.

Officials at the scene said it was unclear if the shooting was a suicide. A suspicious package was found near the body of the agent and a partial evacuation of the building was ordered.

``At this point it is very difficult to determine if (the wound) is self-inflicted, an accidental shooting or if someone else is involved,'' police Sgt. Raul Luna said.

A gun was found but it was not known if it belonged to the agent, a man described as being in his early 40s. His name was not released.

Police sources said heavy security at the courthouse -- including metal detectors -- would make it difficult for someone to bring in a weapon on his or her own.

Earlier on Wednesday, a gunman shot five people, killing one, in a bloody melee near Pittsburgh and took several others hostage before surrendering to authorities.


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