ELKINS PARK, Pa. (CBS) — A recently fired volunteer firefighter took four people hostage inside a firehouse in Montgomery County Tuesday before he surrendered and was arrested.
The incident began at about 10:40 a.m. at the LaMott Fire Company located at Penrose Avenue and Graham Lane in Elkins Park.
According to Cheltenham Township Police Chief John Norris, the suspect, identified by police as 25-year-old Paul Jordan, was armed with a 9 mm handgun when he entered the firehouse and took four firefighters hostage.
Norris said Jordan fired at least one shot into a wall before police arrived at the scene.
When officers arrived, the SWAT Team entered the building and began negotiating with the suspect. At one point, Jordan released one hostage.
Shortly before 11:50 a.m., Norris said Jordan gave up and surrendered to police without incident.
The hostages were unharmed during the incident.
Norris said Jordan was involved in a dispute with the fire company and was fired Monday.
“Volunteers firefighters, especially in our township, are very dedicated people and they take it seriously and do a tough job with no money, no pay, but they’re dedicated to it. So when you get terminated or you lose that job for some reason, it’s very traumatic to the firefighter,” Norris said.
Norris said it was not immediately known why Jordan was fired from his job.
Jordan was taken to the Cheltenham Township Police Department headquarters. Investigators said Jordan will be sent for a mental health evaluation.
Eyewitness News spoke to the mother of one of the hostages.
“It scared me. It shook me up,” Alice Robinson told Eyewitness News.
Robinson’s son Jamaal was held in the basement.
“I’m just glad everybody was safe. I’m glad nobody got hurt,” she said.
Charges are expected to be filed.
The incident remains under investigation.