Community in Shock: Multiple Deaths in Cass County Mass Shooting

Three women died, including one who was said to be pregnant, and one man was fighting life-threatening injuries he got from another man, who later killed himself with a gun.

For people in close-knit Cass County towns, it was a lot more than a number. It was the 637th mass killing in the country this year.

It was very personal for them.

“Heinous acts of this magnitude rock the core of any community,” Sheriff Devron Ohrn said. “This strikes especially hard in small communities such as Cass County and beyond its borders. … I ask you to respect the family at this time. Offer them privacy, compassion, sympathy and prayer as they face the unimaginable.”

“We will get through this, Cass County.”

Autumn Bell, 19, Alaria Bell, 16, and Christina Bell, 53, were named as the victims.

A man who was not named was taken to the hospital with injuries that could kill him. His status wasn’t known on Friday.

Ohrn said that around 8:30 p.m. Thursday, Cass County sheriff’s deputies, Ashland and Beardstown police officers, and Beardstown EMS were called to 308 Philadelphia Road in rural Ashland for a report that a guy had been shot.

More information is still being gathered.

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When police arrived, they found Autumn Bell dead and a guy who had been shot. The injured man was cared for by officers until EMS came, and he was able to give information about a shooting at a different location.

Christina Bell and Alaria Bell were found dead at 752 Lockard St., Lot 51, in Ashland. This is where the police went.

Ronald L. Cobren, 62, of Ashland was named by police as a suspect in the killing.

Around 9 p.m., cops in Jacksonville saw Cobren’s car and stopped it near North Main and Oak streets.

According to the police report, they found Cobren inside the car with what looked like a gunshot wound to the head. The Morgan County Coroner’s Office said he was dead at the scene.

The case was helped by the Illinois State Police, the Pleasant Plains police, and the Menard County sheriff’s officers.

Authorities said that no other information would be given out on Friday.

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