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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Shootout on Streets of Paris Leaves 4 Dead, Sparks Anger

PARIS -- Three policemen and a taxi driver were killed and six people were wounded in two shootouts with a pair of suspected gangsters in central Paris during the night, sparking public and trade union anger on Wednesday.


The suspected killers were captured by police after a wild car chase and the second shootout in a park. One gunman, shot in the head and stomach, was in hospital and unable to speak.


His woman accomplice, who was not injured, was in police custody. Police said they had identified the couple but did not disclose their names while the investigations, which had so far failed to ascertain the attackers' motives, were in progress.


The drama began on Tuesday night when the two hooded attackers armed with tear-gas grenades broke into a police car pound and stole firearms, a police spokesman said.


The couple then hijacked a taxi, taking the driver and his passenger hostage. As they sped through the city center, the driver rammed a police car on the Place de la Nation.


When two police officers got out of the car, they were gunned down, as was the taxi driver. A third officer still in the car and two passers-by were wounded.


The couple then hijacked a second car and drove towards the Bois de Vincennes, a park in eastern Paris.


In a second clash with police on motorcycles there, another policeman was killed and two other officers and the gunman were wounded.


Police trade unions quickly blamed the deaths on inadequate protection and said they would press for reforms and better equipment during a debate on a bill to tighten security opening in the National Assembly on Wednesday.


Meanwhile, taxi drivers demonstrated their anger and fear by driving in convoy through the streets of Paris during the early morning hours, honking their horns.