French authorities said that three French police officers were killed and a fourth wounded while trying to help a woman who fled to the roof of a house during a domestic violence incident.
The shooter has been identified as a 48-year-old man.
It was alleged that he shot two policemen shortly after midnight, when they approached his home in a rural village near Saint-Just in central France.
One of the officers succumbed to his wounds, while the other was taken to hospital with a wound to his thigh.
The Clermont-Ferrand Prosecutor’s Office told AFP that the madman set fire to his home when reservists arrived, and shot two other policemen, killing them.
French Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin said in a statement that the officers killed were between the ages of 21, 37 and 45.
The authorities managed to bring the woman to safety.
Meanwhile, the alleged shooter was still on the run around 7 a.m. local time.
Sources told Agene France-Press that he is known to law enforcement authorities in the region for acts committed in child custody cases.
Francois Chotard, the mayor of Saint-Juste, said during an interview on French television that a family dispute seemed to trigger the accident.
Chotard said that the police were evacuating residents nearby and securing the area, adding that the house was “completely destroyed by the fire.