Florida police shooting teens 'killed themselves'

Alex Hollinghurst's Facebook profile photo Image copyright Alex Hollinghurst
Image caption Alexandria Hollinghurst, known as Alex, was a "talented pupil"

A British teenager and her American boyfriend are believed to have killed themselves after shooting dead a police officer in Florida.

Police said Alexandria Hollinghurst, 17, and Brandon Goode, 18, wrote what appeared to be suicide notes.

The notes were recovered before the pair were found dead in undergrowth on Saturday.

The head teacher of Miss Hollinghurst's former primary school in Derbyshire said she was a "talented pupil".

Her family had emigrated to the US six years ago.

Orange County Sheriff's Office said the couple had been reported as "missing endangered due to the suicidal notes" in the hours before the shooting.

A police spokesman said: "Goode and Hollinghurst are now officially considered suspects in the homicide of Officer Robert German.

"While Goode and Hollinghurst died of what is believed to be gunshot wounds from apparent suicide, we are awaiting the medical examiner's findings for the exact cause of death."

Image copyright Windermere Police Department
Image caption Windermere Police Department Officer Robert German had reported stopping "two individuals"

The shootings took place in the early hours of Saturday in the suburb of Windermere, Orlando.

The sheriff's office said Windermere Police Department Officer German had reported stopping "two individuals" on foot at 03:57 local time, and had then radioed for backup.

When colleagues arrived they discovered Officer German "mortally wounded" with a gunshot injury and he was later pronounced dead at Orlando Regional Medical Centre.

At the same time, gunshots were heard nearby and the bodies of Miss Hollinghurst and Mr Goode were discovered a short distance away, police said.

'He shot her'

Miss Hollinghurst and her family previously lived in the Derbyshire village of Hadfield.

Tony McMylor, who lived next door to the family in Hadfield, believes Miss Hollinghurst was murdered.

"He shot her and then shot himself. That's what I believe," he said.

"I can feel for the parents. It's just horrendous."

Andrew Cartledge, head teacher of St Andrew's Church of England Junior School in Hadfield, said: "Alex Hollinghurst was a pupil at St Andrew's until she was 11 years old.

"She was a talented pupil who it was a pleasure to have in school.

"Alex was sociable with many friends and an outgoing personality. Our thoughts are with her family at this tragic time."

Police said the contents of the apparent suicide notes "will not be revealed at this time as the investigation is active and open".

The sheriff's office said the pair's vehicle was recovered from the car park of a bank in the Kissimmee area of the city, several miles from where the couple are believed to have crossed Officer German's path.

Detectives said they would examine the vehicle for further clues.

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