Four people freed from ongoing Minnesota bank robbery standoff

Henrietta Strickland
May 7, 2021

The branch manager of the bank called police because there was a disgruntled male customer in the business and he was concerned for the safety of the employees and customers, Anderson said.

A standoff at a St. Cloud, Minnesota, bank ended Thursday night around 10:30pm after starting nearly nine hours earlier.

A almost nine-hour standoff ended late Thursday at a St. Cloud bank after a fifth and final bank employee taken hostage during an early afternoon robbery was freed.

Law enforcement officers with helmets and other gear were then seen entering the bank, and a man was taken out in handcuffs and placed in a police vehicle. Company spokeswoman Staci Schiller confirmed "a hostage situation" at the bank's south branch. Around 7:00, a second hostage, also a woman came out. A local TV reporter posted a video Thursday evening, showing a female hostage being released to awaiting armed law enforcement officers outside the front door of the bank.

Negotiators continued to work with the man, at one point, appearing to bring him pizza.

The first to emerge was a woman who ran out with her hands in the air at about 6.30pm as a crowd gathered nearby erupted in cheers. The third and fourth people were released around 8 p.m. The chief said investigators were continuing to sweep the bank for evidence. He says, "we're glad that none of them suffered any physical injuries, but you can [be] rest assured that they're going to have some psychological effects". Other charges on his record include obstruction of justice and making terroristic threats. He remains jailed pending charges. Those charges could come as soon as today.

See video from the scene - including the release of hostages - by clicking here.

"When we got there, we discovered that several people had already fled the bank, about five bank employees remained and were being held hostage", Anderson said.

Police moved onlookers away, but hundreds watched the drama unfold from across the street until it was resolved late Thursday, cheering as each hostage walked free.

Four of the hostages were released and a fifth hostage "made a run for the door" right before the tactical units from the St. Cloud Police Department and the Federal Bureau of Investigation "made a simultaneous entry and took the suspect into custody without incident", Anderson said.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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