Attempted Bank Robbery Turns Into Hostage Situation

Standoff ends after 8 hours
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted May 7, 2021 12:47 AM CDT

(Newser) – A standoff at a St. Cloud, Minnesota, bank ended Thursday night around 10:30pm after starting almost nine hours earlier. Police were called to the Wells Fargo branch around 1:45pm to reports of a possible robbery in progress, the St. Cloud Times reports. It turned into a hostage situation, and over the course of a few hours, five employees were released, some of whom escaped on their own, the Minneapolis Star-Tribune reports. After the final employee came out, police went in and arrested a male suspect, who was led out of the building in handcuffs. Apparently, no customers were held hostage, KNSI Radio reports, and no one was injured during the incident.

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Police say the 35-year-old suspect has a long history with law enforcement and was supposed to be at a court hearing Thursday for a "violent offense." They also said he had a "prior dispute with the bank." One witness says he was in the bank's drive-through when a teller suddenly told him to leave; he says he saw other customers running out the front door as he did so. The suspect reportedly had a bank employee post a sticky note on the drive-through window with a phone number for police to call for negotiations. As the hours wore on, with onlookers cheering as hostages came out one by one, police ordered pizza for themselves and the suspect for dinner.

(Read more Minnesota stories.)

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