Russian police have detained a 45-year-old Muscovite, suspected of shooting multiple people to death in a village northwest of the capital. The man allegedly got into an argument with his companions while drinking.
The suspect killed six men and three women near his weekend cottage in the village of Redkino, some 110 kilometers (70 miles) northwest of Moscow, authorities said on Sunday.
According to police, the man was "drinking spirits" with a group of people he was not very well acquainted with, when an argument broke out.
"The Muscovite left for his cottage, but soon returned with his hunting rifle and shot several times," targeting the people he was arguing with and potential witnesses, officials said.
The 45-year-old was soon arrested and identified by local police. Moscow police deployed a team to the area, officials added. Authorities determined that the suspect had a license for his hunting rifle. One of the bodies was discovered in the trunk of a car.
Many residents of Russian cities visit their cottages, also know by their Russian name of dachas, in the country to escape the heat during the summer. In former Soviet times, employers gifted such small estates to their workers, and many Russians used them to grow their own produce during the bitter poverty of the 1990s.
Russia continues to struggle with a long-running alcoholism crisis. A quarter of Russian men do not make it past the age of 55 - a fact which doctors say is attributable largely to drinking.
dj/jlw (AFP, Interfax)