Officials say at least 13 people were killed Tuesday when a 60-year-old war veteran went on a shooting spree in small village in central Serbia.
According to CNN, the shooter, identified as Ljubisa Bogdanovic, used a handgun in the attacks at five houses in Velika Ivanca, a village 30 miles southeast of Belgrade. The killings occurred between 5 am and 5:30 am local time.
The dead included six women, several of them his relatives.
It is believed most of the victims were shot while they were asleep. Witnesses say Bogdanovic first killed his son before leaving the house and shooting his neighbors. The worst scene discovered by police was the dead bodies of a young mother with her two-year-old son.
“He knocked on the doors, and as they were opened he just fired a shot,” villager Radovan Radosavljevic told The Associated Press. “He was a good neighbor and anyone would open their doors to him. I don’t know what happened.”
“Something must have snapped in his head,” he said.
Officials said Bogdanovic also shot his wife before turning the gun on himself. He and his wife are both in critical condition in a local hospital.
“We have never seen a tragedy like this in Serbia, and for that reason a motive must be ascertained – what prompted this man to kill so many people in their sleep,” Serbian police official Milorad Veljovic told Serbian news site Press Online.
While the motive for the killings is currently under investigation, Fox News reports the suspect had lost his job last year. He had no criminal record and no known history of mental illness.
More on Tuesday’s deadly shooting rampage in the video below:
Serbia’s last big shooting spree occurred in 2007, when a 39-year-old man gunned down nine people and injured two others in the eastern village of Jabukovac.