Law enforcement officials confirmed that five victims ranging in ages from an infant to adults were discovered deceased at the scene. Two male children, one male adult, and two female adults were identified. A six year old female child also suffered gunshot wounds and remains in critical condition at an area hospital.
It appears that the offender forced entry from the backdoor. Based on the shell casings located at the crime scene, it also appears that the weapon used was a shotgun fired at close range. Illinois State Police Crime Scene Services is analyzing forensic and ballistic evidence.
Two of the bodies were discovered in one bedroom, two bodies in another bedroom, and one male adult was discovered in the hallway.
Based on witness statements, the offender took the 6 year old outside of the residence and put her in the hands of a neighbor.
As far as the pursuit and shots exchanged, police are still investigating the scene and interviewing the officers involved. Based on preliminary investigative details, the offender exited his vehicle pointed and discharged his firearm at police.
The officer’s returned fire striking the offender, Rick Odell Smith, 43 of a last known address in rural Morgan County. The offender was taken into custody and transported to an area hospital in critical condition. He was later pronounced dead at the hospital at approximately 10:10 a.m.
Illinois State Police Director Hiram Grau commended the combined efforts of all the law enforcement agencies involved in investigating this tragic homicide. “The Manchester community is saddened by this tragic loss and on behalf of the Illinois State Police and our law enforcement partners, we offer condolences and support during this time of grief,” said ISP Director Hiram Grau.
Illinois State Police also expressed thanks to the First Baptist Church of Manchester.
The last homicide reported in Scott County was in 1993. This is the first multiple homicide known to Scott County.