February 1, 2013

Authorities release photo of Ala. hostage-taker

Police say Jimmy Lee Dykes killed a bus driver, grabbed a 5-year-old boy off the bus and slipped into an underground bunker, where he's been holed up four days.

The Associated Press

(Continued from page 2)

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Authorities gather at the Dale County hostage scene in Midland City, Ala. on Thursday morning, Jan. 31, 2013. A gunman holed up in a bunker with a young hostage has kept law officers at bay since the standoff began when he killed a school bus driver and dragged the boy away, authorities said. (AP Photo/Montgomery Advertiser, Mickey Welsh)

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This photograph released by the Alabama Department of Public Safety shows Jimmy Lee Dykes, a 65-year-old retired truck driver officials identify as the suspect in a fatal shooting and hostage standoff in Midland City, Ala. (AP Photo/Alabama Department of Public Safety)

Creel said his father and Dykes are friends. Creel said that after Dykes' arrest, Dykes wrote a 2- to 3-page letter that at least in part addressed the menacing case and that he shared with Greg Creel.

Michael Creel said he hasn't seen the letter but that his father has. The younger Creel said his father told him that Dykes said he had sent the letter to the local media, politicians and Alabama's governor.

Michael Creel said police on Friday took the copy of the letter from the Creels' home. Reached for comment, Greg Creel confirmed the existence of the letter but declined further comment and said he was cooperating with police.

A neighbor directly across the street, Brock Parrish, said Dykes usually wore overalls and glasses and his posture was hunched-over. He said Dykes usually drove a run-down "creeper" van with some of the windows covered in aluminum foil.

Parrish often saw him digging in his yard, as if he were preparing to lay down a driveway or building foundation. He lived in a small camping trailer and patrolled his lawn at night, walking from corner to corner with a flashlight and a long gun. Parrish described the weapon as an assault rifle, while another neighbor said it was a shotgun. Michael Creel said Dykes has five weapons he knows of, but he's not aware of him having an assault weapon. Authorities have not disclosed what firearms Dykes might have in his possession.

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