Police officer shot dead in New Hampshire house gunfight

Tue May 13, 2014 6:19am EDT

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(Reuters) - A veteran policeman was shot dead on Monday as he responded to reports of a domestic fight at a New Hampshire home that later caught fire and exploded, officials and local media said.

Brentwood Police Department Officer Stephen Arkell was gunned down as he entered the home, New Hampshire Attorney General Joseph Foster told a news conference.

He identified the alleged shooter as 47-year-old Michael Nolan, who media said was a resident's son and was thought to have been killed in the blaze.

"Another police officer arrived and entered the home, but was driven out by gunfire," Foster said. New Hampshire Governor Maggie Hassan paid tribute to Arkell in a statement.

An explosion later blew off part of the roof of the two-story house in suburban Brentwood according to video seen on WMUR-TV. The house was on fire at the time.

(Reporting by Edith Honan and Eric M. Johnson; Editing by Catherine Evans)

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