KANSAS CITY, Kan. (AP) — Dozens of officers searched farmland in central Missouri on Tuesday for a man suspected of killing a man at a nearby house just hours after fatally shooting four people at his neighbor’s home about 170 miles away in Kansas.
Two helicopters, police dogs and at least one SWAT team were helping look for 36-year-old Pablo Serrano, said Capt. John Hotz, a spokesman for the Missouri State Highway Patrol. The patrol said Serrano was considered dangerous and may be armed with an AK-47.
The search area is mostly flat farmland with trees outlying fields near New Florence, Missouri. Several schools in the area were placed on lockdown, with officers stationed at the buildings.
The search began late Monday when four men were shot at the home in Kansas City, Kansas. One of the men managed to call police before he died, but it’s unclear how the men knew each other or what may have prompted the shooting, Kansas City Police Officer Thomas Tomasic said.
The focus of the manhunt shifted around 7 a.m. Tuesday, when a truck Serrano was believed to be driving was found abandoned along Interstate 70 in central Missouri. A 49-year-old man was found fatally shot in a rural home about five miles away, and a witness called 911 around 7:25 a.m. to report seeing a man running from the property, according to Highway Patrol Lt. Paul Reinsch.
Reinsch said there was no indication that Serrano had a vehicle. None of the victims was immediately identified.
The owner of the home where the four men were shot said he received a call from a tenant late Monday night about a person lying on the porch as if he were dead. Steve Manthe said that when he was allowed into the home after 6 a.m. Tuesday, he saw blood on the living room couch and around the room. He said the television was still on.
“It looked like he just stepped in the door and blew them away,” he said.
His family spent part of Tuesday morning scrubbing away blood off the front porch with bleach. Manthe, who has lived in the neighborhood for 25 years, said he wasn’t aware of any tension between the victims and neighbors.
Neighbors who live near the small, yellow one-story Kansas City home where the first four men were shot described the area as quiet. They said they hadn’t heard gun shots the night before.
Al VanBebber, a 54-year-old mechanic who lives a few blocks away, said he knew at least one of the home’s residents and described him as a “nice guy” whom he helped with car repairs and upgrades.
“It’s sick,” VanBebber said. “I don’t know how anybody could do that, with people as nice as could be.”