11 hostages freed after being held at gunpoint at Florida bank

(Photo courtesy of WFLA)

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP) — The Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office says 11 hostages have been freed from a credit union in that north Florida city where they were held at gunpoint by a robbery suspect.

The sheriff’s office said in a tweet Thursday that the hostages were freed about two hours after their ordeal began and that the suspect was in custody.

The suspect was holding several hostages Thursday at a credit union in the north Florida city of Jacksonville, and SWAT team members were on the scene, authorities said.

An initial 911 call reporting a bank robbery came in at 9:06 a.m. A short time later, another call indicated that someone may have been shot, but the sheriff’s office has been unable to confirm that, Bujeda said.

Police negotiators also were present, the spokeswoman added.

Streets surrounding the bank were blocked by police, and Bujeda urged patience from business people unable to get to work.

“Situations like these sometimes can be short and sometimes can be long,” she said.

Bujeda urged local TV reporters not to show their positions around the bank because that could pose “a danger to officers as well as the individuals in the bank.”

The bank is located in a northwest Jacksonville commercial district surrounded by a storage facility and a dollar store.

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