MIDLAND CITY, Ala. (TheBlaze/AP) — A man who fatally shot the driver of a school bus in Alabama and fled with a 6-year-old child passenger has prompted an hours-long standoff with police that remained unresolved Wednesday, authorities and reports said.
The Dale County Sheriff told WBMA-TV that the man shot the driver in Midland City on Tuesday afternoon when he refused to let the child off the bus. The driver later died of his wounds. His name wasn’t released by police following the tragic incident. The Dothan Eagle is now reporting that the shooter has been identified as 67-year-old Jimmy Lee Dykes.
The shooter took the child to an area behind a nearby church, and police were negotiating with him for hours, authorities said.
WSFA-TV reported early Wednesday that Alabama State troopers, a SWAT team and FBI agents had converged nearby.
Midland City police would not comment, and a dispatcher at the Dale City Sheriff’s office told The Associated Press early Wednesday that the agency was not releasing any immediate details. However, details have begun to leak as the situation progresses.
Fox News has more about the standoff as of Wednesday morning:
The boy was last seen with the suspect and local reports say it is unclear if the boy is still with the suspect. Police would not immediately confirm a hostage situation, DothanEagle.com reported.
Police with SWAT teams and negotiators were at the rural property in Alabama where the suspect was believed to be holed up in a bunker after fatally shooting the driver of a school bus and fleeing with the boy. Residents in the surrounding area were evacuated and a bomb squad was at the scene, the WSFA.com reported.
Authorities have been in contact with the suspect and the boy is believed to be OK, WSFA said. The situation is considered delicate.
Police from multiple agencies were on the scene and nearby residents were evacuated from their homes as a precautionary measure, said Rachel David, a spokeswoman for the police department in the nearby town of Dothan.
“Authorities also confirmed the presence of a child at the scene but are giving no further information at this time,” David said in a news release late Tuesday.