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Cops: S.C. murder suspect wounds officer, kills himself

GREENVILLE, S.C. - South Carolina authorities say a gunman killed two security guards and his stepfather and wounded a police officer, before fatally shooting himself in the head.

Greenville County Sheriff Steve Loftis said 23-year-old Evan Casey Bennett shot security guards Richard Ellison, 53, and Bobby Wood, 65, early Friday morning at a Hollingsworth textile factory in Greenville, but wasn't immediately identified and captured.

"Investigators have learned that Bennett spent ample time on the Hollingsworth property in the past and made statements he was watching the security guards," Loftis said, according to CBS affiliate WSPA.

Interim Greenville Police Chief Mike Gambrell said Bennett then killed his stepfather, 58-year-old Gregory Jones, on Monday before heading over to the Greenville County Law Enforcement Center, where he shot out windows and fired on the officer before turning the gun on himself.

The police chief said Bennett was wearing a tactical vest and camouflage pants and carrying a knife when he arrived at the center, which houses the Greenville Police Department and the local sheriff's office.

WSPA reports that Bennett killed Jones after his stepfather confronted him about the security guard shootings. Loftis described the other shootings as a "senseless thrill killing."

Loftis said Bennett's family confronted him about the killings at their Greenville home, and that the suspect went into his room and came out armed with a shotgun. A witness told police that he shot his stepfather twice in the face, according to the station.

Gambrell said Bennett shot himself in the head and died in the Law Enforcement Center parking lot. The unidentified wounded officer was taken to a hospital where he underwent surgery and is in serious condition.

"Each of us knows the risk each day when we place our badge on our chest and walk out the door," said Gambrell. "This officer is a shining example of that dedicated service."

According to the station, Bennett was arrested in 2011 for stalking a woman, but the case was later dismissed. Loftis said the 23-year-old had gone to a psychiatrist once in the past but was not prescribed any medication.