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2 female victims unharmed after NJ UPS hostage situation

Posted at 3:38 PM, Jan 14, 2019
and last updated 2019-01-14 17:29:49-05

LOGAN TOWNSHIP, N.J. — An armed man entered a UPS processing facility Monday morning, took two women hostage and barricaded himself in a room with them for 3½ hours until police moved in to rescue the women in a confrontation that left the suspect fatally shot.

The women escaped without serious injuries while the gunman’s condition remained unknown after the standoff in Logan Township, about 20 miles (32 kilometers) south of Philadelphia, Gloucester County Prosecutor Charles Fiore said.

The gunman wasn’t identified by authorities. Officials believe he had a prior relationship with one of the hostages, according to Fiore, who did not elaborate.

“I heard one of my fellow employees say, ‘Run, he’s got a gun,’ then I heard the little pop of the gun, I guess, and we all ran and law enforcement took over,” employee Allen Anthony Dowling said.

The man entered the building shortly before 9:30 a.m. and fired shots, though Fiore said no one was hit. Police evacuated the building and blocked access to the busy industrial park, and nearby schools were put on a modified lockdown.

Hostage negotiators talked to the suspect by phone as he held the women captive.

Shortly before noon, as Fiore held a news conference at a township building about 8 miles away, a short burst of gunfire was heard at the scene. Fiore later said he didn’t know how many shots police fired or whether the gunman fired any shots.

Television news footage showed officers crouched behind a vehicle behind the building’s loading dock at the time.

“There was an intervention,” FIore said. “He did not surrender.”

Police trained in hostage situations, he said, “would make a determination as to whether or not it’s appropriate to intervene, using force at any point in time.”

In addition to UPS, other major companies including Amazon and U.S. Foods have operations in the area, Mayor Frank Minor said. The township has about 6,500 residents, but some 18,000 people are in the area each workday, he said.