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Suspected shoplifter fatally shot

NORTH SMITHFIELD, R.I. -- Police shot and killed a man suspected of shoplifting from a grocery store yesterday as he tried to flee in a minivan with his 5-year-old daughter.

The officer opened fire after being struck by the suspect's minivan, according to a statement from North Smithfield Chief Steven Reynolds.

Security personnel at the Stop & Shop supermarket called police about 2:15 p.m. to report a shoplifter who had just left the store with another man. The responding officer confronted the suspect in the store's parking lot.

The suspect, identified by police as James Wilcox, 34, of Pawtucket, struck the officer as he tried to flee in his vehicle, police said. The officer, whose name was not released, fired one shot that struck Wilcox in the stomach, police said.

Wilcox was pronounced dead on arrival at Rhode Island Hospital. The officer was treated and released. State child welfare officials were called to the scene to take care of the girl. The other suspect, Carl Dinsmore, 45, of Cranston, was apprehended nearby.

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