A suspect was killed Thursday afternoon in a shootout with officers after an hours-long standoff in Cincinnati, Ohio, authorities said. Officials said the standoff began after the suspect attempted to break into the FBI’s Cincinnati office building around 9 a.m. and then gave chase to agents.
The suspect, identified as Ricky Shiffer by two law enforcement sources, ended the standoff by firing at officers, Ohio State Highway Patrol Lt. Nathan Dennis in a press conference Thursday night. Officers returned fire and the suspect died at the scene. No officers were injured in the confrontation.
Authorities on Thursday gave no indication of a possible motive for the breach, and said the incident is still under investigation.
But hours before the attack, Shiffer seemed to post on former President Donald Trump’s “TRUTH Social” social media platform to express his desire to kill federal agents. The post has since been removed by the site’s moderators.
The situation unfolded around 9 a.m., as Ohio State Highway Patrol agents and local law enforcement officers responded to the alleged breach attempt at the FBI field office.
A suspect raised the alarm by trying to break into the visitor center. The FBI said the person fled after an immediate response from special agents
, prompting law enforcement to close about a mile of a nearby highway and issue a warning to residents and businesses in the area.
According to a statement from the state highway patrol, just after 9:30 a.m., officers found a Ford Crown Victoria on Interstate 71 in Warren County that matched the description of the armed suspect’s vehicle. The driver fled from officers and a shot was fired from the car.
Authorities chased the car and the suspect stopped at 9:53 a.m. on Smith Road in Clinton County, where he exited the car and fired shots. He used his car as a shield – and the confrontation with cops began.
After attempts at negotiation failed, officers tried to take him into custody. The suspect fired several shots around 3:42 p.m. and police returned fire, Dennis said. The suspect died on the spot. The FBI said one of its agents was involved in the gunfights, say in a statement that it was “the overhaul of this cop-involved shooting”.
FBI Director Christopher Wray released a statement Thursday condemning violence and threats against the agency.
“Unwarranted attacks on the integrity of the FBI undermine respect for the rule of law and are a serious disservice to the men and women who sacrifice so much to protect others,” Wray said. “Violence and threats against law enforcement, including the FBI, are dangerous and should be a serious burden to all Americans.”
The incident happened a day after Wray issued a warning about violent threats circulating online in the aftermath of this week FBI search at Trump’s Florida residence, Mar-a-Lago.
“This has been a horrendous attack on law enforcement — my office and I are monitoring the situation as it develops,” Senator Sherrod Brown also said in a statement. “My thoughts are with all those whose lives were threatened by this attack.”