Gunman’s sister among nine people killed in Ohio mass shooting

A gunman in body armour who opened fire in a popular entertainment district in Dayton, Ohio, killed nine people including his sister, officials have said.

Connor Betts, 24, was shot dead by police less than a minute after he opened fire with a .223-calibre rifle in the streets of the Oregon District at around 1am on Sunday in the second US mass shooting in less than 24 hours.

Police have not released further information about Betts or publicly discussed a motive.

The official who identified the gunman spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity.

His 22-year-old sister Megan was the youngest of those killed.

The other men and women who were killed ranged in age from 25 to 57.

Dayton Mayor Nan Whaley said the gunman was wearing body armour and had additional high-capacity magazines.

Had police not responded so quickly, "hundreds of people in the Oregon District could be dead today", she said.

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Aug 4, 2019; Dayton, OH, USA; (right to left) Witnesses Nikita Papillion, 23, of Five Oaks, Tanycia Leonard, 28, of Kettering, and Tiffany McConnell, 43, of Vandalia, recall their night out in the Oregon District before gunfire broke out in Dayton, Ohio, on Sunday, Aug. 4, 2019. Ten people are dead, including the suspected shooter, and 26 are injured after shooting broke out in Dayton's Oregon District. The suspected used a .223 caliber rifle and was found wearing body armor and multiple spare magazines, according the the city's mayor Nan Whaley. Dayton Police on patrol in the entertainment district responded and neutralized the shooter in less than one minute, the mayor said. Mandatory Credit: Sam Greene/Cincinnati Enquirer-USA TODAY NETWORK/Sipa USA
Mourners gather at a vigil following a nearby mass shooting, Sunday, Aug. 4, 2019, in Dayton, Ohio. Multiple people in Ohio have been killed in the second mass shooting in the U.S. in less than 24 hours, and the suspected shooter is also deceased, police said. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)
Mourners gather at a vigil following a nearby mass shooting, Sunday, Aug. 4, 2019, in Dayton, Ohio. Multiple people in Ohio have been killed in the second mass shooting in the U.S. in less than 24 hours, and the suspected shooter is also deceased, police said. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)
Ohio shooting
Ohio shooting: At least 9 killed, 16 injured in second mass shooting in US
US President Donald Trump gives a statement about the recent mass shootings in El Paso and Dayton before boarding to Washington at Morristown Airport on August 04, 2019. - The United States was in mourning Sunday for victims of two mass shootings that killed 29 people in less than 24 hours as debate raged over whether President Donald Trump's rhetoric was partly to blame for surging gun violence. The rampages turned innocent snippets of everyday life into nightmares of bloodshed: 20 people shot dead while shopping at a crowded Walmart in El Paso, Texas on Saturday morning, and nine more outside a bar in a popular nightlife district in Dayton, Ohio just 13 hours later. (Photo by Nicholas Kamm / AFP) (Photo credit should read NICHOLAS KAMM/AFP/Getty Images)
Aug 4, 2019; Dayton, OH, USA; Investigators from the Dayton Police, Ohio State Highway Patrol, ATF and FBI work the scene of a deadly mass shooting in the Oregon District area of Dayton, Ohio, on Sunday, Aug. 4, 2019. Ten people are dead, including the suspected shooter, and 26 are injured after shooting broke out in Dayton's Oregon District. The suspected used a .223 caliber rifle and was found wearing body armor and multiple spare magazines, according the the city's mayor Nan Whaley. Dayton Police on patrol in the entertainment district responded and neutralized the shooter in less than one minute, the mayor said. Mandatory Credit: Sam Greene/Cincinnati Enquirer-USA TODAY NETWORK/Sipa USA
Shoes are piled outside the scene of a mass shooting including Ned Peppers bar, Sunday, Aug. 4, 2019, in Dayton, Ohio. Several people in Ohio have been killed in the second mass shooting in the U.S. in less than 24 hours, and the suspected shooter is also deceased, police said. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)
Authorities walk among evidence markers at the scene of a mass shooting, Sunday, Aug. 4, 2019, in Dayton, Ohio. Severral people in Ohio have been killed in the second mass shooting in the U.S. in less than 24 hours, and the suspected shooter is also deceased, police said. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)
Mourners gather at a vigil following a nearby mass shooting, Sunday, Aug. 4, 2019, in Dayton, Ohio. Multiple people in Ohio have been killed in the second mass shooting in the U.S. in less than 24 hours, and the suspected shooter is also deceased, police said. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)
Mourners gather at a vigil following a nearby mass shooting, Sunday, Aug. 4, 2019, in Dayton, Ohio. Multiple people in Ohio have been killed in the second mass shooting in the U.S. in less than 24 hours, and the suspected shooter is also deceased, police said. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)
Bodies are removed from at the scene of a mass shooting, Sunday, Aug. 4, 2019, in Dayton, Ohio. Several people in Ohio have been killed in the second mass shooting in the U.S. in less than 24 hours, and the suspected shooter is also deceased, police said. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)
Mourners gather at a vigil following a nearby mass shooting, Sunday, Aug. 4, 2019, in Dayton, Ohio. Multiple people in Ohio have been killed in the second mass shooting in the U.S. in less than 24 hours, and the suspected shooter is also deceased, police said. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)
Mourners gather at a vigil following a nearby mass shooting, Sunday, Aug. 4, 2019, in Dayton, Ohio. Multiple people in Ohio have been killed in the second mass shooting in the U.S. in less than 24 hours, and the suspected shooter is also deceased, police said. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)
Mourners gather at a vigil following a nearby mass shooting, Sunday, Aug. 4, 2019, in Dayton, Ohio. Multiple people in Ohio have been killed in the second mass shooting in the U.S. in less than 24 hours, and the suspected shooter is also deceased, police said. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)
Mourners gather at a vigil following a nearby mass shooting Sunday, Aug. 4, 2019, in Dayton, Ohio. Multiple people in Ohio have been killed in the second mass shooting in the U.S. in less than 24 hours, and the suspected shooter is also deceased, police said. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)
Mourners gather at a vigil following a nearby mass shooting, Sunday, Aug. 4, 2019, in Dayton, Ohio. Multiple people in Ohio have been killed in the second mass shooting in the U.S. in less than 24 hours, and the suspected shooter is also deceased, police said. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)
Mourner Amanda Luke holds a sign at vigil following a mass shooting, Sunday, Aug. 4, 2019, in Dayton, Ohio. Multiple people in Ohio have been killed in the second mass shooting in the U.S. in less than 24 hours, and the suspected shooter is also deceased, police said. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)
Authorities remove evidence markers at the scene of a mass shooting, Sunday, Aug. 4, 2019, in Dayton, Ohio. Multiple people in Ohio have been killed in the second mass shooting in the U.S. in less than 24 hours, and the suspected shooter is also deceased, police said. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)
Mourners gather at a vigil following a nearby mass shooting, Sunday, Aug. 4, 2019, in Dayton, Ohio. Multiple people in Ohio have been killed in the second mass shooting in the U.S. in less than 24 hours, and the suspected shooter is also deceased, police said. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)
Authorities remove bloody rags and debris at the scene of a mass shooting, Sunday, Aug. 4, 2019, in Dayton, Ohio. Multiple people in Ohio have been killed in the second mass shooting in the U.S. in less than 24 hours, and the suspected shooter is also deceased, police said. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)
Policías acuden al lugar del tiroteo en Dayton, Ohio, el 4 de agosto del 2019. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)
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The Oregon District is a historic neighbourhood that Lieutenant Colonel Matt Carper described as "a safe part of downtown," home to bars, restaurants and theatres.

Ms Whaley said at least 27 people were treated for injuries and at least 15 of those have been released.

Several more remain in serious or critical condition, local hospital officials said at a news conference.

They said some people suffered multiple gunshot wounds and others suffered injuries as they fled.

Nikita Papillon, 23, was across the street at Newcom's Tavern when the shooting started.

She said she saw a girl she had talked to earlier lying outside Ned Peppers Bar.

"She had told me she liked my outfit and thought I was cute and I told her I liked her outfit and I thought she was cute," Ms Papillon said.

She had been to Ned Peppers the night before, describing it as the kind of place "where you don't have to worry about someone shooting up the place."

"People my age, we don't think something like this is going to happen," she said.

"And when it happens, words can't describe it."

Tianycia Leonard, 28, was in the back of Newcom's.

She heard "loud thumps" she initially thought was people pounding on a skip.

"It was so noisy but then you could tell it was gunshots and there was a lot of rounds," Ms Leonard said.

Ned Peppers staff said in a Facebook post they were left shaken and confused by the shooting.

The bar said a bouncer was treated for shrapnel wounds.

A message seeking further comment was left with staff.

President Donald Trump has been briefed on the shooting and praised law enforcement's speedy response in a tweet on Sunday morning.

Governor Mike DeWine issued his own statement before 7am, announcing he has ordered flags in Ohio remain at half-mast,.

He also offered assistance to Ms Whaley.

Ohio Shooting
Residents comfort each other as they await word on whether they know any of the victims (Julie Carr Smyth/AP)

The FBI is assisting with the investigation.

A family assistance centre was set up at the Dayton Convention Centre, where people seeking information on victims arrived in a steady trickle throughout the morning.

Some local pastors were on hand to offer support, as were comfort dogs.

Ms Whaley said the Oregon District is expected to reopen on Sunday afternoon and a vigil is planned on Sunday evening.

The minor league baseball team Dayton Dragons, who play in nearby Fifth Third Field, postponed their Sunday afternoon game against the Lake County Captains "due to this morning's tragic event".

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(PA Graphics)

The Ohio shooting came hours after a young man opened fire in a crowded shopping area in El Paso, Texas, leaving 20 dead and more than two dozen injured.

Just days before, on July 28, a 19-year-old shot and killed three people, including two children, at the Gilroy Garlic Festival in northern California.

Sunday's shooting in Dayton was the 22nd mass killing in the US this year.

The first 20 mass killings in the US in 2019 claimed 96 lives.

The shooting in Dayton comes after the area was heavily damaged when tornadoes swept through western Ohio in late May, destroying or damaging hundreds of homes and businesses.

"Dayton has been through a lot already this year and I continue to be amazed by the grit and resiliency of our community," Ms Whaley said.

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