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Texas Officials Respond to News of Colleyville Synagogue Hostage Taking

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Texas Officials Respond to News of Colleyville Synagogue Hostage Taking

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Texas lawmakers and officials are reacting to news of a hostage situation at a Jewish synagogue where three people are believed to be being held.

Authorities said a man apparently took hostages on Saturday during services at a Texas synagogue where the suspect could be heard ranting angrily in a live stream before the stream was cut.

A police vehicle on guard near a synagogue in which a man has taken several hostages.
(KDFW)

TEXAS SWAT TEAM RESPONDS TO SYNAGOGUE HOSTAGE SITUATION: ‘I WILL DIE’

The Colleyville Police Department tweeted Saturday afternoon he was conducting SWAT operations at the address of Congregation Beth Israel, northeast of Fort Worth.

At least four hostages are believed to be inside the synagogue, according to two law enforcement officials who were not authorized to discuss the ongoing investigation and who spoke to The Associated Press under cover of anonymity. The synagogue’s rabbi is believed to be among the hostages, one of the officials said.

Texas Officials Respond to News of Colleyville Synagogue Hostage Taking

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Congregation Beth Israel.
(Credit: Google Maps)

Reactions from Texas officials immediately began pouring in when the news broke.

“The Texas Department of Public Safety is at the scene of the tense hostage situation in Colleyville, TX,” Texas Governor Greg Abbott tweeted. “They are working with local and federal teams to get the best and safest outcome. I continue to monitor the situation through DPS.”

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“As a precaution, @DallasPD Deploying additional patrols to Dallas synagogues and other sites,” Dallas Mayor Eric Johnson tweeted. “Police are working with the Jewish Federation and our local, state and federal partners to monitor any concerns or threats based on the situation in Colleyville.

Texas Officials Respond to News of Colleyville Synagogue Hostage Taking

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Texas State Troopers and Police near the Colleyville Synagogue where a man is holding several hostages.
(KDFW)

“I am closely monitoring the Texas SWAT operation at a Dallas-area synagogue today,” tweeted Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton. “My office is ready to help @ColleyvillePD.”

“Heidi and I are praying for those at Congregation Beth Israel in Colleyville and for the SWAT team and all other law enforcement at the scene who are responding,” Texas Sen. Ted Cruz said. “My team and I are closely monitoring the situation and are in close contact with local and national authorities.”

“Sending force to Colleyville as another community in Texas is tragically targeted by a gunman,” tweeted former Texas congressman and gubernatorial candidate Beto O’Rourke. “If you are in the area, please heed local authority warnings and avoid the area around Congregation Beth Israel Synagogue. You can find updates in this thread.”

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“I have just been made aware of the situation at Congregation Beth Israel in Colleyville by the DHS Secretary, and I will continue to monitor,” Texas Sen. John Cornyn said. “Please pray for the hostages inside and law enforcement at the scene.”

“Join me in praying for a safe and speedy recovery for everyone at Congregation Beth Israel, including our responding law enforcement officers in Colleyville,” tweeted Rep. Tony Gonzales of Texas’ 23rd District.

FBI Dallas spokeswoman Katie Chaumont said an FBI SWAT team was also on the scene and crisis negotiators contacted someone inside the synagogue. But she couldn’t say if the person was armed, and she declined to describe what the person said to authorities, citing operational sensitivity.

Associated Press contributed to this report


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