Tuesday afternoon, 67-year old Vietnam veteran, Jimmy Lee Dykes, allegedly blocked and boarded a school bus on U.S. 231, north of Midland City, Alabama. Reports poured in that Dykes demanded two boys between the ages of 6 and 8 only to be declined by the bus driver. Dykes then shot the bus driver, killing him and grabbed a 5-year old who had fainted. The gunman then took the boy to a bunker at his home and there began a harrowing 2-day ordeal. The bunker has been surrounded and local authorities have been in contact with Dykes, who agreed at one point to allow authorities to provide his hostage with medication that the boy requires. It has been reported by Fox News that the boy has not been harmed and has even been reported to be watching television in the bunker with Dykes.
Neighbors are being interviewed about Dykes mental state and many are coming forward with alarming testimony. According to various neighbors, Dykes is not mentally sound and has a history of violent behavior. In fact, this Wednesday, Dykes was due in court to answer for charges of menacing a neighbor who drove by his house. Other incidents involving Dykes include threatening children with guns, firing shots at a neighbor and her children over a makeshift speed bump and beating a dog to death with a lead pipe for coming into his yard. Dykes is said to be paranoid and anti-government.
The standoff remains in effect today, with no demands from Dykes. According to locals, it seems Dykes simply wanted a hostage and nothing more. The question remains, why? According to the Daily News, the other children that were on the bus late Tuesday afternoon are safe, but many are in shock and seeking treatment. The bus driver, Charles Poland, is being hailed as a hero for trying to protect the 21 students that were on board his bus. Authorities say that the boy remains unharmed and no relation between Dykes and the boy has been confirmed. SWAT has been called in and is standing by.