Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Man holds 5 hostage in Virginia post office

An armed disabled man was holding five people hostage nearly four hours after his takeover of a Virginia post office on Wednesday, the town's mayor said.

The man entered the Wytheville, Virginia, post office about 2:30 p.m. and fired a shot, Mayor Trent Crewe said. No one has been hurt, but three postal workers and two customers are being held hostage, he said.

There also are reports that the man has a "device" and it appears the man's car, parked outside the office, is equipped with some type of device, Crewe said. He did not elaborate on what the device could be.

The surrounding area of downtown Wytheville has been evacuated, Crewe said.

Agents with the FBI and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives are also on scene, said Crewe.

"Hopefully it'll be shortly resolved in a peaceful manner," he said.

Wytheville is a small town in southwestern Virginia at the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains. It has a population of just over 8,000.


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