Midland City, AL (WVEE) – After the hostage standoff situation in Alabama entered its 7th day, it seemed like the end was nowhere in sight. Some reports even claimed authorities were prepared to let it play out for months, if that’s what it took to keep 5-year old Ethan safe.
But after an explosion and gunfire, we can now confirm that it’s over.
Little Ethan was under threat at all times, but when the FBI discovered Jimmy Lee Dykes had a weapon, they had every right to believe Ethan’s life was in danger and they made a move.
Jimmy Lee Dykes who allegedly shot a school bus driver last week, had threatened to kill all the children on the bus before taking little Ethan.
Drones were flying over the homemade underground bunker this morning near Midland City, Ala., where police say Dykes was holding Ethan hostage.
Officials have not released the boy’s last name, but his parents, at one point, thanked the kidnapper for not harming their son.
It was reported that a toy car and some Cheez Its were lowered into the bunker for the boy. The kidnapper also allowed medicine to be delivered for the kindergartner, after it was reported that he suffers from Asperger’s syndrome and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder.
Despite days of negotiations, police say they had little to go on.
Outside of wanting a reporter to tell his story, Dykes, 65, made few demands, and they had no motive for his actions, or any sense of when the standoff might end.
But now we can report that after an explosion and gunfire Jimmy Lee Dykes is dead and 5-year old, Ethan is safe.
Authorities say Ethan is at or near a hospital in Dothan.
During a press conference, Steve Richardson, the special FBI agent in charge in Alabama said, “At approximately 3:12 this afternoon, FBI agents safely recovered the child who has been held hostage for nearly a week. Within the past 24 hrs, negotiations deteriorated and Mr. Dykes was observed holding a gun. At this point, the FBI, fearing the child was in imminent danger, entered the bunker and rescued the child.”
Although the rescue is not being disclosed in full detail, the child is being treated at a local hospital and appears to be unharmed well… at least physically.
Jimmy Lee Dykes is dead.