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Virginia family of five killed in apparent murder-suicide

(Reuters) - A Culpeper, Virginia, family of five was shot to death in an apparent murder-suicide, with the father the suspected shooter, police said on Monday.

The bodies of Clarence and Shauna Washington, both 35, and their three daughters, ages 4, 6, and 13, were discovered by officers late on Sunday inside their house, said Detective Angela Deavers of the Culpeper County Sheriff Office.

Shauna Washington's mother called police around 10 p.m. to report a "death scene," she said. Police suspect Clarence Washington was the gunman.

Police cleared the scene after collecting evidence, including a gun. The bodies were removed for autopsies.

The Virginia State Police were assisting the sheriff's office with the investigation.

Culpeper is a town of about 17,000 people some 50 miles (80 km) southwest of Washington.

(Reporting by John Clarke; Editing by Doina Chiacu and Bill Trott)