Serial shooter suspect takes overdose

Dec. 7, 2006 at 5:00 PM
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PHOENIX, Dec. 7 (UPI) -- One of the suspects in Arizona's serial shooter case apparently tried to kill himself by taking an overdose of over-the-counter antihistamines.

Dale Hausner was found in his cell Monday morning, Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio told the Arizona Republic. Arpaio said he was unsure if Hausner was genuinely trying to take his own life or was engaged in a bid for sympathy or publicity.

Hausner and Samuel Dieteman could face the death penalty if they are convicted of murder. Investigators say that the two were both involved in the "serial shooter" attacks, a series of 36 drive-by killings and woundings that terrorized the Phoenix area.

Arpaio said that Hausner is under observation in a psychiatric ward.

"I want Hausner safe," Arpaio said. "I think the community he terrorized should have the privilege of deciding this man's fate, not him."

Hausner reportedly bought two bottles of antihistamine, the maximum possible, through the jail canteen and took all 48 pills. Arpaio has now banned inmates from buying any medication, except Ibuprofen.

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