Page last updated at 07:11 GMT, Monday, 23 March 2009

Four Oakland policemen shot dead

Two armed police officers take cover behind cars as an apartment is stormed in Oakland
The shootings led to a city-wide manhunt in Oakland, California

Four police officers have been killed in shootings in Oakland, California.

A 26-year-old man on parole allegedly opened fire on the police after he was pulled over on Saturday afternoon.

The suspect escaped after shooting two officers but was killed himself hours later in a gunfight with police in which two more died.

One of the officers was pronounced brain dead on Sunday and was on life support while a decision was made regarding organ donation.

The two officers shot at the scene of the traffic stop were named as Sgt Mark Dunakin, 40, and John Hege, 41.

On Sunday, an Oakland police spokesman Jeff Thomason told AP news agency that Officer Hege had been pronounced brain dead.

Two specialist officers who were killed in the assault on the suspect in an apartment were named as Sgt Ervin Romans, 43, and Sgt Dan Sakai, 35.

Police said the suspect, whom they named as Lovelle Mixon, was also killed.

They said it had been the deadliest day for police in Oakland's history.

'Tragic day'

In a statement, California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger offered his sympathies to the families of those killed.

"This is a tragic day for law enforcement officers everywhere," he said, adding that the officers had "dedicated their lives to public safety and selflessly worked to protect the people of Oakland".

Police said Lovelle Mixon had been on parole for assault with a deadly weapon and they had had a warrant out for his arrest.

His cousin, LaTasha Mixon, said Lovelle was "not a monster" and described his family as "devastated" by his death.

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