McLEAN, Va. — Police have cleared the northern Virginia office building that houses USA Today without incident after receiving a report of an armed man.

Fairfax County Police Chief Edwin Roessler said Wednesday afternoon that SWAT teams had concluded their search and found no evidence that any crime had occurred.

Police said a 911 call came in around noon Wednesday from the building saying an armed former employee had been seen there.

Roessler said that person had since been found at another location.

Roessler said police are investigating whether that individual had even been in the building, part of which was evacuated after the report.

The incident came as the nation reels from its latest mass shootings — at a Walmart store in El Paso, Texas, and an entertainment district in Dayton, Ohio. A combined 31 people were killed and dozens wounded in less than 24 hours in those two weekend attacks.

The incident occurred just two days after GateHouse Media, a fast-growing chain backed by an investment firm, announced it was buying USA Today’s owner, Gannett, in a $1.4 billion merger of two of the largest U.S. newspaper companies.

The companies said they were committed to journalistic excellence while also cutting costs by $300 million annually. The combined company would have more than 260 daily papers in the U.S. along with more than 300 weeklies.

The move comes amid the continuing circulation decline for print newspapers as more people turn to their computers and smart phones for news.


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