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Tuesday, 15 October, 2002, 01:29 GMT 02:29 UK
Bush outraged by 'terrorist' sniper
Members of the Guardian Angels at a fuel station in Alexandria
Volunteers help people too nervous to fill their cars
President George W Bush has expressed his revulsion at the sniper killings around Washington, describing them as a "form of terrorism".

Obviously he [the sniper] doesn't have time at the weekends

Criminologist James Fox
"The idea of moms taking their kids to school and sheltering them from a potential sniper attack is not the America that I know," the American leader told reporters.

Police have reported progress in their hunt for the killer or killers who have shot 10 people around the city this month, but gave no details.

Monday marked the longest space of time between attacks since they began on 2 October.

In that time, there was a shooting nearly every other day up until the killing of a 53-year-old father-of-six at a Virginia petrol station on Friday morning, which brought the death toll to eight.

Sniper attacks
2-3 Oct - Five people killed in Montgomery County, Maryland
3 Oct - Man killed in Washington DC
4 Oct - Woman injured in Fredericksburg, Virginia
7 Oct - Boy injured in Prince George's County, Maryland
9 Oct - Man killed in Manassas, Virginia
11 Oct - Man killed in Fredericksburg, Virginia

Investigators refused to reveal any details of possible suspects on Monday, saying they did not want the public to develop "tunnel vision" and exclude possible perpetrators.

The eight people killed and two wounded were each hit by a single shot fired at distances believed to be around 100 metres (yards) as they went about their daily business.

This has prompted speculation that the gunman may have had military sniper training.

People went back to work on Monday as usual and children were in school, but correspondents say that Washington DC and its suburbs remain tense and schools are banning pupils from playing outside.

Criminologist James Fox of Northeastern University in Boston told the Associated Press news agency that the fact that there had been no attacks at weekends could be significant.

"They have to make time to kill and obviously he doesn't have time at the weekends," he said.

'Open mind'

"I think the progress is going really well," said Police Chief Charles Moose, who is co-ordinating the hunt for the sniper, on Monday.

A police officer hands out pictures of a truck being sought
Police want to trace a white lorry seen at several of the shootings

But Chief Moose, of Maryland's Montgomery County where five of the victims died, refused to speculate about a pattern, saying he wanted the public to "keep an open mind".

A composite picture of a white lorry seen at some of the shootings was released on Sunday, but Mr Moose said that was to clarify the exact type of vehicle being sought rather than close off people's minds.

An image of a second white Chevrolet Astro van was also being prepared but was not ready for release as planned on Monday.

He's luring people into being confident again

Betty Charlton

Mr Moose said a post office box number had been set up in case people wanted to send tips about the killer and any accomplice by post rather than telephone.

In Washington itself, many government employees were not at work for the Columbus Day holiday and the streets were quiet.

One shopper in Rockville, Maryland, told the Associated Press that she feared the sniper was "luring people into being confident again".

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Trail of terror
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13 Oct 02 | Americas
12 Oct 02 | Americas
12 Oct 02 | Americas
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