JUST IN: Door of Cobb bank breached; standoff continues – Atlanta Journal Constitution

Tom MarkLast Update : Friday 7 July 2017 - 6:37 PM
JUST IN: Door of Cobb bank breached; standoff continues – Atlanta Journal Constitution

1:49 p.m.: A suspect in an hours-long bank standoff has died, Cobb police Chief Mike Register said during an afternoon press conference.

1:42 p.m.: Robots found the suspect down inside the bank, sources told Channel 2 Action News.

1:23 p.m.: Police have breached the door to Cobb County bank and have visual with suspect, according to Channel 2 Action News.

1:21 p.m.: Police plan to provide another update 1:30 p.m.

1:20 p.m.: With bank employees outside and away from the man assumed to be armed, police are moving on with their operation in the standoff that has been going on inside a Marietta branch of Wells Fargo since 9:30 a.m.

Authorities are putting together “a plan to go inside to determine what has happened inside that bank,” Cobb police Sgt. Dana Pierce said.

Pierce did not explain how the employees got out of the bank, citing the ongoing tactical operation. And when asked about a loud sound that was heard outside the bank, Pierce said it was a distraction device being used.

12:56 p.m.: Atlanta Journal-Constitution staff writer Ben Brasch has the latest on a standoff at a Cobb County Wells Fargo bank.

12:47 p.m.: While no more hostages are in the bank, the standoff continues, officials said. “If what he’s telling us is true,” Cobb police Sgt. Dana Pierce said, “then we still have to treat this as a dangerous situation.”

12:41 p.m.: “We are not in communication” with the suspect at this moment, police said. He has made demands, but police have not specified what those demands were.

UPDATE [12:41 p.m.]: No more hostages are inside the bank, Cobb police Sgt. Dana Pierce said. “We do not have anyone inside the bank except for that individual,” he said, referring to the man who was holding employees hostage.

ORIGINAL STORY: A man who described himself as a homeless veteran called Channel 2 Action News on Friday and said he had a bomb and two hostages inside a Cobb County bank.

Cobb police Chief Mike Register said officers are in contact with the man, who identified himself as Brian Easley.

A police spokeswoman said Easley is still inside the Wells Fargo bank in the 2600 block of Windy Hill Road near Marietta with an unknown number of employees and has made general threats.

There were no customers, only “a couple” employees, in the bank when Easley entered about 9:30 a.m., police said.

Though authorities assume he has a gun based on comments made to Channel 2 and police, “no one inside the bank has been harmed or anyone outside the bank,” Officer Alicia Chilton told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution about 11:45 a.m. “This is an active situation. However, the public is not at risk.”

Easley, 33, of Jefferson, called the Channel 2 newsroom just before 10:30 a.m. He spent nearly one hour talking about his life and detailing demands, the news station reported. He said he was kicked out of the VA Hospital on Monday when officials called police on him. He said he was homeless and staying at a Marietta hotel when he went to the bank.

Authorities don’t know if Easley has a connection to the bank. They said they do not believe this was a robbery.

“He’s been very calm,” Cobb police Sgt. Dana Pierce said.

Channel 2 also got calls from two people who described themselves as hostages. One of the callers said she was the branch manager. 

In pictures posted on social media and footage on local news stations, Cobb police could be seen in riot gear and hiding in a wooded area near the bank, which is close to I-75.

Patrick Lawrence was in the Chick-fil-A drive-thru next to the bank about 10 a.m. when he started to see cop cars speeding in the area.

“I thought it was just a wreck,” he said. “ I suddenly realized there were cops with sniper rifles.”

Cobb County police are on the scene of a bank robbery. (Credit: Patrick Lawrence / Twitter)

After taking some photos, which he gave The AJC permission to use, Lawrence thought it was best to get out of the area. 

“I realized I probably don’t want to be around here anymore,” he said. “They were blocking off the road. As I was leaving there were more (emergency vehicles) coming in.”

Cobb County police are on the scene of a bank robbery. (Credit: Patrick Lawrence / Twitter)

Windy Hill Road is blocked from I-75 to North Park Place, according to the Cobb County Department of Transportation. The closure snarled traffic on Cobb Parkway at Franklin Gateway.

—Please return to AJC.com for updates.

In other news:

The girl’s coach said that the fatal crash has devastated everyone who knew the victim.

Source: world

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