No explosives found after Cobb County bank standoff
COBB COUNTY, Ga. - The man, who police said went into a Cobb County bank claiming to have explosives, prompting a SWAT team standoff for several hours Friday, did not have explosives, according to the Georgia Bureau of Investigation.
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Authorities said 33-year-old Brian Easley died and officials are trying to find out why he did it.
Easley's loved ones tell FOX 5's Nathalie Pozo that the Brian Easley they knew is not the same man that walked into that bank.
"This is not the Brian I know," said loved one Jazzima Damons. "He would not hurt nobody, nobody."
"Our family is just in shock right now because the Brian they are saying that went up in this bank, that is not him, he is a very loving person," said Sierra Damons.
Relatives said Easley was dedicated to his country and served overseas in Iraq while he was enlisted in the Marines. Loved ones said he was not only devoted to his country, but to his eight-year-old daughter.
"Her and her father were very close," said Jazzima. "She had a very strong, good relationship with her father, he was a very good father and a great provider, he loved his family."
During that time, an Atlanta television newsroom claimed that the man called their newsroom and spent more than 30 minutes talking and detailing those demands. The man told the television station that he was an Iraqi war veteran who was having financial trouble and would soon be homeless.
“We made contact trying to extract the hostages a member of the tactical team may have been responsible for the deceased,” said Chief Register. “It's unfortunate when something like this happens. It’s not something that we want to happen. But unfortunately to preserve life sometimes it becomes necessary.”
The SWAT team entered the building, getting all the remaining employees out safely out the back of the bank. A specialized unit then swept the bank for explosives.
“It appears he may have previously been in the military and his grievances were with military injuries,” said Chief Register.
The Georgia Bureau of Investigation is investigating this incident as an officer-involved shooting, according to officials.
No one was injured inside or outside the bank, according to officials.
Sierra and Jazzima Damons said Easley's wife is devasted and asking privacy.
FOX 5 Atlanta spoke to a witness, Jae Edwards, who was getting gas at a gas station with his wife. He claims police told him to leave the area. Next door at the Popeye’s, employees were asked to evacuate if they could. The same case was unfolding on the other side of the bank.
"Got in, ordered our food at the Chick-fil-a, and that's when the chaos started," said witness Rodney Graham shortly after the end of the standoff. "After that, police showed up and everyone that was in there had to stay there until right about now."
Georgia Department of Transportation and Cobb County traffic cameras showed that Windy Hill Road was closed down as well the ramps on and off Interstates 75 and 285.