Wisonsin shooting.....

6 dead, 1 injured in shooting at home in southern Wisconsin

DELAVAN, WIS. - A shooting inside a home killed six people, and a toddler was found in a nearby vehicle with a gunshot to the chest, the police chief said Sunday.

Police found the bodies while investigating a report of shots fired Saturday night in this southern Wisconsin city, Chief Tim O'Neill said.

The wounded child, a 2-year-old girl, was taken to a hospital in Rockford, Ill., where she was reported in critical condition late Saturday, hospital officials said. Rockford Memorial Hospital officials said she was flown to the University of Wisconsin Hospital in Madison, where officials did not immediately give her condition Sunday morning.

Police cordoned off a two-block area around the crime scene Sunday morning as neighbors gathered on the sidewalks to watch the investigation unfold just three blocks from the police station. A small dog that a neighbor said belonged to the people who lived in the house, sat in the front yard as police removed the bodies.

One of the spectators was next-door neighbor Jesus Valadez, 27, who said he was outside in spite of police telling him to stay indoors and keep his doors locked.

"It's kind of scary," Valadez said. "Exciting, don't get me wrong. Better than watching TV."

James Brandenburg, 57, of Delavan dropped to his knees as police wheeled out bodies at mid-morning and threw his arms to the sky. He had spent several minutes earlier, also on his knees, praying.

"It's tragic. It's getting worse all the time," he said. "If we want to, we can put a stop to this."

Pete Brancheau, 59, who lives across the street from the shooting scene, said it is a rental property where people often move in and out. He heard six shots Saturday night but thought nothing of it because children in the neighborhood play with firecrackers "all the time," he said.

About a minute later, he heard a series of about three shots, he said. He looked outside a few minutes later and saw police cordoning off the area.

It's scary," he said. "Especially when there's a baby involved. There's no answer for it."

Delavan is a bucolic community of 8,000 people about 40 miles southwest of Milwaukee. The white house where the shootings took place is on a tree-lined street that is a block from a United Methodist Church. Churchgoers stopped and watched the scene briefly as they were on their way to Sunday morning services.

The city's two-block downtown area has brick-covered streets. The P.T. Barnum Circus, "The Greatest Show on Earth," was founded in Delavan in 1871.

"People moved in and out and before you know it, there's somebody else," said Leandra Mena, 65, who lives across the street from the house, but did not know the people who lived there. "This is something we never thought could happen here,"

Tina McKinnon, 37, who lives down the street and around the corner, said she saw the family in the neighborhood but also did not know them.

"It was a very quiet house," she said. "Never had any commotion whatsoever. The children were very pleasant."

Associated Press writer Scott Bauer contributed to this report.

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