Site of Oregon shooting
Site of Oregon shooting Reuters

The gunman who killed nine people at a community college in Roseburg, Oregon, last week died at the front of the classroom where he committed most of the carnage, police officials said on Wednesday, according to The New York Times.

The gunman, Christopher Harper-Mercer, 26, was wounded in an exchange of gunfire with officers while standing just outside a school building at Umpqua Community College, before running back into a classroom and killing himself, the police said.

At a news conference, the Oregon State Police said the responding officers arrived at the scene in plain clothes, without bulletproof vests.

They heard shots, and spotted Harper-Mercer in the doorway of the building, Snyder Hall.

He fired several rounds at the detectives, who responded with three shots. One hit Harper-Mercer on the right side, the police said according to The New York Times.

After being injured, Harper-Mercer returned to Classroom 15, where he had killed his teacher and fellow students. There, he shot himself.

Survivors of the lethal shooting attack later said the gunman had singled out Christians.

“The shooter was lining people up and asking if they were Christian,” wrote one woman on Twitter who said her grandmother was in the classroom where Harper-Mercer began his rampage.

"If they said yes, then they were shot in the head. If they said no, or didn’t answer, they were shot in the legs.”