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Standoff Ends; Suspect Killed In MD Hostage Situation

Standoff Ends; Suspect Killed In MD Hostage Situation

The suspected bank robber in a gray hoodie points a gun at a woman he is using as a shield, just moments before he trips and the woman escapes. (Photo courtesy WTOP | NBC Washington)

January 28, 2011

TAKOMA PARK, Md. – A hostage situation during a bank robbery has ended with the suspect dead, and three others hurt, authorities say.

The incident happened at the Capital One bank in the 1100 block of University Boulevard in Takoma Park Friday morning.

Police first started receiving 911 calls about a suspicious package around 9:30 a.m., which were followed by reports of a man with a gun inside the bank.

When police surrounded the bank, a suspect emerged wearing a ski mask and holding a gun to the head of a bank teller.

As he tried to manuever around the crowd of police, the suspect slipped on a patch of ice, allowing the hostage to break free. When the hostage ran toward police, the suspect was shot. He later died.

A Prince George’s County Police officer was shot in the leg during the incident and was taken to a nearby hospital. A person inside the bank was pistol whipped and also taken to the hospital. Both are expected to be okay.

Prince George’s County Police and the FBI are still on the scene investigating.

A woman, who was at the Starbucks in the Hampshire Langley Shopping Center, where the bank is located, tells Channel 4 she heard a lot of gunfire. She says customers hit the floor when the shots were fired. The customers remain in the Starbucks.

She says she then saw a woman who looked terrified run toward the police.

“I’m kind of in shock right now,” the woman says. “There were gunshots and she ran toward the policeman. I could tell she had been through something tremendously dramatic.”

A customer or bank employee apparently tried to knock the gun out of the suspect’s hand and was injured, Channel 4 reports. The man then ran to the Starbucks.

Montgomery County Police spokesman Cpl. Dan Friz tells Channel 4 the man required medical assistance for a minor head injury.

Friz says police recovered a weapon from the suspect.

He says police are making sure there are no other suspects in the bank. A canine team has been dispatched to make sure there are no explosives in the bank.

“After the tactical team and canine team have swept the bank to make sure it’s clear, we’re going to slow things down. We’ll start interviewing all of the folks involved, the officers involved. We’ll take a look at the video surveillance, not only from the news helicopter, but also in the bank area and businesses,” Friz says.

Traffic along University Boulevard has since reopened.

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