Officials: Hostage standoff ends with child rescued, kidnapper dead
By Victor Blackwell, Martin Savidge and Carol Cratty
updated 5:54 PM EST, Mon February 4, 2013
NEW: FBI says child was rescued after negotiators felt he was in danger
Boy has been taken to a hospital in Dothan, state legislator said
Witness said he heard explosion followed by gunshots
Midland City, Alabama (CNN) -- A 5-year-old child abducted from a school bus six days ago is safe and his kidnapper is dead, ending a nearly week-long ordeal for a little boy, his family and a small Alabama town.
The child appeared to be OK when he was freed, law enforcement officials said. Alabama state Rep. Steve Clouse told CNN that the boy was taken to a hospital in nearby Dothan.
FBI Special Agent in Charge Steve Richardson at the scene said negotiations had broken down with the child's abductor and the kidnapper was "observed holding a gun."
Believing the child to be in imminent danger, an FBI team entered the bunker at 3:12 p.m. CT (4:12 p.m. ET) and rescued the boy, Richardson said, adding that the hostage-taker is dead.
One neighbor said he was outside when he was startled by the sound of an explosion.
"I heard a big boom and then ... I believe I heard rifle shots," said Bryon Martin, who owns a home near the bunker where the boy had been held since Tuesday.
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