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One person fatally shot in Houston FBI hostage rescue of kidnapped migrants

The FBI has not provided further detail into the hostage situation

Graig Graziosi
Thursday 23 March 2023 21:06 GMT
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One man was killed by FBI agents during a hostage rescue operation in North Houston that began after three migrants were kidnapped earlier this week, according to law enforcement.

FBI agents in North Houston rescued several hostages held by a man who was shot and killed during the rescue. The agency said it planned to "conduct a thorough, factual, and objective investigation of the events."

The operation on Thursday was part of a multi-day law enforcement effort which began on 18 March, when the driver of a vehicle with three migrants onboard reported to police in nearby Waller County that the passengers had been kidnapped from the vehicle, the Waller County District Attorney’s Office told the Associated Press.

An unnamed source familiar with the incident told the AP the kidnappers demanded a ransom payment from the families of one of the migrants who was kidnapped, and that the hostage takers sent videos showing the group was alive to law enforcement.

The source said that in addition to the individual who was killed, another person was arrested in the raid.

“In the interest of protecting the investigation’s integrity, we cannot provide any further details at this time,” the FBI said in a statement, per The New York Times.

The FBI said that all hotages were rescued safely, according to KHOU.

Multiple law enforcement agencies including the Waller County Sheriff’s Office, the Harris County Sheriff’s Office, and the FBI arrived at the scene of the hostage situation on Thursday morning, according to Fox 26.

The FBI said Thursday that while there was no threat to public safety, it advised residents to avoid the area until the investigation was completed.

The hostage incident appeared to come to an end at a Sutdio 6 motel in the Greenspoint section of Houston, near a local freeway, according to KHOU.

The motel said it was working with law enforcement to assist the investigation.

“Our thoughts are with the victims’ families,” the company said in a statement.

Aerial footage of the crime scene captured by ABC13 shows a tarp covering the open door to one of the rooms in the hotel, as members of a SWAT team assembled in a nearby parking lot.

The FBI’s Shooting Incident Review team will investigate the shooting involving one of its agents, while the agency’s Evidence Response Team will comb through the scene looking for evidence in the hostage case, Fox 26 reports.

The identity of the individual killed has not yet been released, according to ABC13.

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