A man who took hostages at a Cobb County bank claiming he had a bomb was shot dead by police after a standoff on Friday that lasted more than four hours, authorities said.
Police in riot gear swarmed the scene surrounding the Wells Fargo Bank in Marietta. Two employees held hostage were released unharmed.
The man called the Channel 2 Action News newsroom just before 10:30 a.m. Friday claiming he had a bomb with the power to “take out the entire room.” He told the television station he didn’t want to hurt anyone.
In a lengthy phone conversation with Channel 2 Action News assignment editor, the man said he was a homeless, Marine veteran who served two tours in Iraq with a supply company.
Cobb County police were able to remove the hostages from the bank but the suspect remained inside, police said.
A robot breached the front door of the bank at around 1 p.m..
“It appears a member of the tactical team when we made contact trying to extract the hostages, a member of the tactical team may have been responsible for the deceased,”Cobb police Chief Mike Register said.
The Georgia Bureau of Investigation it as an officer-involved shooting.
“It’s unfortunate when something like this happens,” Register said. “It’s not something we want to happen but unfortunately to preserve life sometimes it becomes necessary.”
Register would not comment on whether the suspect made any aggressive moves toward police.
But he explained that the man indicated he had enough explosive material that they were concerned not only about the bank but the surrounding area.
“When he first went in the bank, he let it be known that he had an IED and he was prepared to use it,” Register said.
The incident snarled traffic in the area for hours.
In addition to Windy Hill Road being blocked off, I-75 ramps to Windy Hill Road were blocked, along with I-285 W ramp to I-75 N, according to the Georgia Department of Transportation. They have since reopened.