According to a tweet from Gov. Greg Abbott late Saturday night, the three remaining hostages inside a Texas synagogue were alive and unharmed, putting an end to the nightmare that had begun hours earlier.
“Prayers answered,” Abbott wrote. “All hostages are out alive and safe.”
The Associated Press said that while officials sought to liberate the captives in Colleyville at Congregation Beth Israel, near Fort Worth, a loud blast and the sound of gunshots could be heard just before the governor’s message.
Police Chief Michael Miller informed reporters during a press conference about 11:20 p.m. ET that “the person is dead.” The hostage taker’s name was not being made public right away.
According to Miller, the reason the suspect chose Congregation Beth Israel as the site of the murder is still a mystery.
The AP reports that the FBI stated the suspect was specifically focused on a specific topic that had nothing to do with the Jewish community.
Hostage situation negotiators were among the more than 200 cops involved in Saturday’s investigation.
Only a few hours before, one of the hostages had been released safely, giving police reason to believe that the siege would be peaceful.
A Texas SWAT squad had reacted to Congregation Beth Israel hours earlier after a suspect had entered the place of worship and taken hostages during the services being live-streamed on the Internet.
Alleged supporter of Aafia Siddiqui, Pakistani neuroscientist, who was condemned to 86 years jail in 2010 for attempted murder and assault on US military personnel and was being imprisoned at Federal Medical Center Carswell, a Fort Worth, Texas, prison.