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Last Updated: Thursday, 9 December, 2004, 13:10 GMT
Gunman kills guitarist on stage
'Dimebag' Darrell Abbott
Guitarist 'Dimebag' Darrell Abbott who was shot dead on stage
A gunman opened fire on a rock band and crowd during a concert at a nightclub in Columbus, Ohio, on Wednesday, killing five people and injuring two.

Among the dead was Darrell Abbott, guitarist with metal band Damageplan, formed from Grammy-nominated group Pantera, who had just begun their set.

Police said the man got on stage, shot Abbott several times at point-blank range and fired at other band members.

He then turned on the crowd before being shot dead by police.

Columbus police spokesman Sergeant Brent Mull said an officer arrived shortly after the shooting began.

"If the officer wasn't as close as he was, I think this would have been a lot worse," he said. "It was a chaotic scene, just a horrific scene."

One witness, Chris Couch, 22, who said he was standing about 30ft (9m) from the stage, said a man wearing a hooded sweatshirt and hockey jersey walked up to the stage.

A tribute outside the Alrosa Villa nightclub, scene of the shootings

The man in the jersey climbed onto the stage, started yelling and shot the guitarist five or six times at close range, Mr Couch said.

He added the gunman also shot a bouncer who pulled him off the musician.

"It was definitely a grudge. It was against something," he said.

Amanda Stankus, who was at the concert with Mr Couch, said she initially thought the shooting was part of the show.

"I just saw the guitarist fall down, and we decided to get out of there," she said.

Rock group Damageplan
Damageplan were formed by ex-members of metal group Pantera

Two of the other dead were named as Erin Bray and Nathan Halk by the Columbus police department.

Damageplan were formed in 2003 by guitarist "Dimebag" Darrell Abbott and drummer brother Vinnie Paul after their former band, Pantera, split up.

Pantera were one of the most popular metal bands of the early 1990s, topping the US album charts and getting a Grammy nomination for 1994 release Far Beyond Driven.

The pair were joined in the new band by singer Pat Lachman and bassist Bob "Zilla" Kakaha.

'Dimebag' Abbott: Hard rock hero
09 Dec 04 |  Entertainment
Metal band Damageplan's journey
09 Dec 04 |  Entertainment


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