A man fleeing a hit-and-run freeway accident ran to a home and attacked two women today, killing one and breaking the other's neck before barricading himself in a second house and opening fire on police, authorities said.

The man was found dead about eight hours later. He was shot by a SWAT team member, King County Sheriff Dave Reichert said.

Officers had fired tear gas into the house after an hour-long pause in the gunfire. By 8 p.m. (11 p.m. EDT), 6 1/2 hours after the ordeal began, no shots had been fired from the house for nearly three hours. After a robot determined the man was unresponsive, a SWAT team entered the house and found him dead.

Police were called to the area by a neighbor who heard a woman scream. When officers arrived, a man holed up in a nearby house began firing.

Police said two women, both in their sixties, were assaulted in the yard outside a home, possibly with a garden tool. One was bludgeoned to death, and the other was in critical condition with a broken neck.

SWAT teams converged on the scene and helped evacuate nearby homes. Students in a nearby elementary school were ordered to stay inside.

A female deputy was in serious condition with a fractured skull and cuts on her face apparently suffered when a bullet struck her vehicle, said a spokesman for Harborview Medical Center in Seattle.

Witnesses told police they saw the suspect jump out of his car and run into the neighborhood after his car struck Anthony Venegas's motorcycle on Interstate 5 and caught fire. Venegas, 64, lost his left leg in the crash.

The accident and standoff forced police to close I-5 in both directions at the start of the evening rush hour for the holiday weekend.