Serial killer Zhou Kehua dead

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A man who is accused of a series of robberies and killings since 2004 died in a shootout with police Tuesday morning in southwest China's Chongqing municipality.

Police notice is seen on a big screen outside a department store in Chongqing. 

Zhou Kehua's DNA information, provided by police in Jiangsu Province, and his physical description, provided by police in Changsha, Hunan Province, laid a "solid foundation" for the operation, police in Chongqing said.

The search for Zhou has been going on since Friday morning, as he is suspected of having killed a woman and injured another two in a robbery in which he is thought to have stolen 250,000 yuan ($39,300) from the victims.

Zhou is also suspected of killing a railway police officer on Friday when the officer was patrolling a section of railway in Chongqing.

Pictures released by Chongqing police showed Zhou in a blue T-shirt and a pair of suit pants lying in a pool of blood with at least one visible bullet hole in his head and a mobile phone, a pair of sunglasses and a small handbag near his body.

The pistol that Zhou used in the robberies can also be seen in the photos.

Crowds of local residents once gripped by the terror created by the alleged serial killer were seen standing along nearby streets, watching a police vehicle carrying Zhou's body leave the scene.

The alleged killer, described as "ruthless and highly dangerous" by China's authorities, became infamous for robbing people withdrawing money from banks and repeatedly dodging police manhunts.

The Ministry of Public Security classified Zhou as a "class-A" suspect. In all, 5.4 million yuan in rewards were offered for tips leading to his capture.

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