SHELBYVILLE, Ind. – A woman held hostage inside a convenience store for nearly 20 hours was rescued Thursday amid what authorities said was an exchange of shots that left the gunman dead.
Police officers pulled the woman from the store about 6:30 a.m. after the gunman began shooting from inside the building, state police 1st Sgt. Dave Bursten said.
Negotiators had made arrangements for the woman to come to the door of the Bigfoot store under the pretense of being handed a new telephone, with officers hoping to grab her, Bursten said.
Shortly before that move was to happen, the gunman broke off communication for 10-15 seconds before shots began from inside the store, he said. SWAT team members then went into the store.
"They were able to grab the hostage and pull her to safety as gunfire continued and officers returned fire, ultimately resulting the death of the suspect," Bursten said.
The gunman was Dennis McAninch (search), 34, of Cincinnati, his brother, John McAninch, told reporters at the scene. Authorities did not immediately confirm that identification.
The standoff began Wednesday morning after officers pursued a car on Interstate 74 carrying two men they suspected of burglary about 30 miles away in the southeastern Indiana town of Batesville.
Witnesses said the car broadsided a pickup truck and then pulled into the parking lot of the store near the I-74 and Indiana 44 interchange about 25 miles southeast of Indianapolis.
The gunman left the car and began firing at officers as he dashed into the store and took the woman hostage, police said. No one was injured by the initial shots as customers fled, abandoning their vehicles at the gas pumps.
Officers were able to apprehend the other man without incident.
Victoria Felts of Rushville was pumping gas when the gunman drove the damaged car into the parking lot.
"He didn't put it in park because it was rolling when he got out," she said. "He started firing at the police. He went into the store, and the passenger he had gave himself up."
Felts said she fled: "I was closer than most people would want to be."