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Texas shooting leaves three dead including police officer

The third public shooting in the U.S. in a month has taken place in Texas. Three people are reported dead, including a police officer.

U.S. police have secured a residential area near Texas A&M University after a man opened fire killing two people and injuring four before being shot dead by police. Texas police said one of their officers was among the dead.

Police rushed to the scene of a shooting at a private house at midday local time on Monday. The officer was shot dead after reportedly trying to serve an eviction notice at a home in College Station.

Gunfire was exchanged for half an hour and a number of injuries were reported. The gunman himself was shot and later reported to have died.

Rhonda Seaton, a spokeswoman with the College Station police department said three people were killed; the police officer, the man authorities say opened fire on law enforcement officers and an unidentified civilian.

The shooting took place near the university campus which has some 50,000 students. It is 160 kilometres north of Houston in the south-western state.

This was the third public shooting in the U.S. in a month: with an attack on a crowded cinema in Colorado followed by a similar incident at a Sikh Temple in Wisconsin. It has placed the debate on gun laws high on the agenda in this presidential election campaign.

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney in Miami on Monday said there should be no change to current gun laws.

"We've now had apparently ... three of these tragedies in a row and I happen to believe this is not a matter of the weapon that is used," Romney said. "It's a matter of the individuals, the choices these people make and we have to understand those kinds of choices from being made."

jm/msh (Reuters, AP)