Seattle shooting suspect shoots himself, police say

(CNN) -- A suspect in the shooting spree at a Seattle cafe shot himself as investigators closed in on him Wednesday, police said.

A plainclothes detective spotted the man in the same part of town where a car spotted fleeing from a separate killing had been ditched Wednesday morning, Assistant Chief Jim Pugel told reporters. The man shot himself in the head as uniformed officers approached him, and he was being rushed to a hospital Wednesday afternoon, Pugel said.

Three people were dead and two wounded at the coffeehouse in the city's University District, with the two survivors listed in critical condition. Investigators were still trying to determine whether those killings were connected to the second shooting, which occurred about a half-hour later near downtown Seattle.

"We're not saying it's not connected. We're not saying it is," Pugel said. "We're going to let the evidence lead us."

The suspect shot himself shortly after police released security camera images from the killings at Café Racer. He appears to be about 30, with dark hair and a beard, and was wearing a light blue jacket and a dark shirt.

Witnesses to the second shooting told police a woman and man were arguing in a parking lot when the man pulled out a pistol and shot the woman in the head. He took off in a black Mercedes sport-utility vehicle, which was found around noon in a neighborhood a few miles southwest of downtown, police said.

Heavily armed police were using dogs to search the neighborhood around the cafe early Wednesday afternoon, neighbors said.

"The streets are blocked off, and there's tons of cops," said Joe Backus, the manager of a musical instrument shop next to Café Racer, where the shootings took place. Police told employees and customers to stay inside while the search was going on, he said.

Nearby resident Evan Hill said he could hear the gunfire from his living room.

"I counted four or five shots and somebody shouting, and I ran out to my balcony and called 911," Hill told CNN affiliate KOMO.

Hill called the cafe a "very mellow" venue that hosts artwork and musical performances.

"It makes you kind of angry that it would happen in a place like that," he said.

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