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A hostage situation has developed at the American Hotel on Blue Goose Drive in Hancock, beginning late last night and continuing into the morning.

One suspect, 26-year-old James A. Prevatt III, is holding a hostage inside a room at the motel. Police spokesman Greg Shipley reports that the standoff began around 10:30 p.m. Wednesday night, when state troopers and sheriff's deputies went to the motel to arrest Prevatt.

After Prevatt threatened to kill a hostage, authorities set up a perimeter and called SWAT officers and negotiators to the scene.

The Hancock fire department was unaware of any injuries but reported that rescue personnel were still standing by at 4:45 a.m. Officials have closed U.S. 522 from the Interstate 70 interchange to the West Virginia state line because of the standoff.

Shipley says Prevatt is wanted in Maryland, South Carolina, Massachusetts and Virginia on burglary and larceny charges
 

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HANCOCK, Md., Thursday, Aug. 21 -- U.S. 522 remains closed to traffic between I-70 and the West Virginia side of the Potomac River as negotiators talk with a man who has taken a hostage at a motel on U.S. 522. James A. Prevatt III, 26, address unknown, threatened to kill a woman and police when Maryland State Police, Hagerstown, and Washington County Sheriff's deputies went to the motel, according to state police. Prevatt is wanted for burglary and larceny in Maryland, Virginia, South Carolina and Massachusetts.
Reports say he was in Massachusetts in February.

A trooper was tipped on Wednesday night that Prevatt and his 21-year-old girlfriend was staying at America's Best Value Inn in Hancock, police said. Two trooper and two deputies determined the room where the two were staying. When they knocked on the door and announced themselves, the lights in the room went out. A man inside said he would kill his hostage and police attempting to arrest him. Police backed off and called for help.
Twelve rooms were evacuated.
The Maryland State Police Special Tactical Assault Team Element established a perimeter. The Hostage Recovery Team have been in negotiations with Prevatt since late Wednesday night.
No shots have been fired, police said. It has not been confirmed whether Prevatt is armed, but he is changed in some burglaries where firearms were taken.
The highway will remain closed until the incident is over, police said.
 

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Maryland State Police

James A. Prevatt III is a burglary suspect wanted in four states.

HANCOCK, Md. - A burglary suspect wanted in four states was holed up Thursday in a western Maryland motel with a woman police believed was his pregnant girlfriend, and doctors were standing by in case she went into labor, authorities said.
The standoff began around 10:30 p.m. Wednesday when state troopers and sheriff's deputies went to the America's Best Value Inn on U.S. 522 in Hancock to arrest 26-year-old James A. Prevatt III, Maryland State police spokesman Greg Shipley said.
Shipley said Prevatt threatened to kill the woman in the room with him and any officers who tried to arrest him.
The woman is thought to be Prevatt's 21-year-old girlfriend, and Shipley said she is believed to be roughly eight months pregnant. Authorities don't know if Prevatt is the baby's father. A team of physicians from Johns Hopkins Hospital was standing by to handle any medical emergency, including childbirth, Shipley said.
Thursday evening, Shipley said, troopers attempted to get food to the room with a robot. Shipley did not know if Prevatt got the food.
Troopers and deputies evacuated the 12 occupied rooms of the 20 rooms in the one-story red brick motel where other guests were staying. U.S 522 was blocked in both directions near the motel, where a sign advertises room rates at $45 and up.
Prevatt is wanted in Maryland, South Carolina, Massachusetts and Virginia on burglary and larceny charges, Shipley said, and some of the burglaries involved the theft of firearms. "He has told negotiators that he has weapons," Shipley said.
Joseph Michael, Washington County deputy state's attorney, said the only charges on record against Prevatt in Maryland stemmed from a July 2000 warrant involving a burglary and the theft of electronic equipment at a home in Hagerstown.
Prevatt was serving time in prison in Massachusetts as late as February and was released after completing his prison term, Shipley said.
 

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Maryland Standoff Drags into Third Day

By DAVID DISHNEAU
Associated Press Writer

HANCOCK, Md. --
A burglary suspect holding police at bay at a western Maryland motel threatened to shoot a police robot bringing food and ignored a recorded plea from his mother to surrender, police said Friday as the standoff dragged into its third day.
The one-story motel has been surrounded by police since Wednesday night, when officers came to arrest James Prevatt III, 26, who is wanted in four states. Prevatt threatened to kill the officers and his pregnant girlfriend, identified as Renee Reynolds, 21, triggering an evacuation of the building.
On Friday, dozens of law enforcement vehicles from local agencies, Maryland State Police and the FBI lined the nearby road. Heavily armed and armored SWAT team members periodically walked up a road alongside the motel and out of sight behind a tree line. Across a bridge, a small group of townsfolk gathered to watch the activity.
Authorities played a recording Thursday night of Prevatt's mother, from Monks Corner, S.C. "She was requesting that he come out and give himself up," said Maryland State Police spokesman Greg Shipley.
Police also used a robotic vehicle to send pizza and soda that Prevatt requested to his room Thursday evening. But Prevatt threatened to shoot the robot and did not retrieve the food, Shipley said. The robot sat outside the room for hours before police withdrew the vehicle.
Prevatt and Reynolds may have supplies. They were seen at a nearby convenience store buying food Wednesday evening, Shipley said.
Authorities have been in contact with the girlfriend's relatives in Summerville, S.C., and have no indication she is being held against her will, Shipley said.
Negotiators also spoke with Reynolds and she told them she was fine. "That is a good report," Shipley said. He added it was Prevatt who informed authorities that Reynolds is pregnant.
Prevatt is wanted in Maryland, South Carolina, Massachusetts and Virginia on burglary and larceny charges, Shipley said,
The standoff at the America's Best Value Inn on U.S. 522 in Hancock has stranded some other guests because their luggage and vehicles are inside the police line, where they cannot be removed.
Troopers and deputies evacuated 12 occupied rooms of the 20-room motel at the start of the ordeal around 10:30 p.m. Wednesday.
Ohio travelers Doug Collin, of Kirtland, and Mary Lou Bender, of South Euclid, say they'd like to continue their trip to visit her son in Tilghman Island, Md. "We just want to get our belongings and our car and get out of here," Collin said.
Charlie Wright, 46, who was traveling from Baltimore to West Virginia, said his wife Kathleen had to go without medication for high blood pressure and other ailments for a day until police agreed on Thursday to retrieve some of their luggage.
Shipley said that attempting to enter the motel to retrieve luggage could put law officers in danger.

Wire Service
 

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Maryland standoff suspect is Mass. fugitive

By Associated Press
Saturday, August 23, 2008

HANCOCK, Md. - Police ended a two-day standoff with a burglary suspect holed up in a motel with his pregnant girlfriend, bursting into the room and grabbing the man after he was brought food Friday, authorities said.
James Prevatt III, 26, was captured around 7:30 at the one-story motel that officers had surrounded since Wednesday night, said Maj. Larry Suther of the Baltimore County Police Department. No one was injured when police ended the standoff, during which the suspect had threatened to kill officers and the woman.
After a robotic vehicle brought Prevatt a second delivery of food Friday, officers pushed their way through the room's front door and used an explosive device to blow open the back door.
"We sort of saw an opportunity," said Suther, whose department sent 10 SWAT team members who participated in the capture. "That was when he was most vulnerable."
Prevatt and the woman, identified as 21-year-old Renee Reynolds, were taken to an area hospital for checkups and were being questioned Friday night.
Joseph Michaels, deputy state's attorney for Washington County, said charges against Prevatt would be filed later Friday. He was also wanted in three other states.
During negotiations that stretched over 45 hours, Prevatt threatened to detonate bombs in his room, said Maryland State Police spokesman Greg Shipley.
"He talked about people being blown to so many pieces that the CIA would have to put them back together," Shipley said. Officers didn't immediately find guns or explosives in the room.
The western Maryland motel was evacuated and dozens of law enforcement vehicles from local agencies, Maryland State Police and the FBI lined the nearby road Friday.
Police had used a robotic vehicle to send pizza and soda Thursday evening. But Prevatt threatened to shoot the robot and did not retrieve the food, Shipley said.
On Friday, the robot was able to successfully deliver hamburgers and soda and then, in a separate trip, cigarettes.
Shipley said Prevatt had slept for short periods but had been awake for most of the standoff.
Prevatt was wanted in Maryland, South Carolina, Massachusetts and Virginia on burglary and larceny charges, Shipley said.
The standoff at the America's Best Value Inn on U.S. 522 had stranded some other guests because their luggage and vehicles were inside the police line and couldn't be removed.
Troopers and deputies evacuated 12 occupied rooms of the 20-room motel at the start of the standoff that began when officers came to arrest Prevatt around 10:30 p.m. Wednesday.
Ohio travelers Doug Collin, of Kirtland, and Mary Lou Bender, of South Euclid, were finally able to continue their trip to visit her son in Tilghman Island, Md., after police retrieved their car and bags around 1:30 p.m. Friday.
"We just want to get our belongings and our car and get out of here," Collin said.

http://bostonherald.com/news/region..._Maryland_standoff_suspect_is_Mass__fugitive/
 

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
August 23, 2008


TROOPERS CHARGE PAIR IN HANCOCK BARRICADE

(Hancock, MD) - Maryland State Police have charged both the man and his girlfriend who were taken into custody last night after a two-day standoff in a Washington County motel.
After consultation with the Washington County State's Attorney's Office, James A. Prevatt, III, 26, of Moncks Corner, South Carolina, was charged with felony theft by possession of stolen property, two counts of threat of arson by use of an explosive device, and two counts of possession of controlled dangerous substances which are suspected marijuana and MDMA. Prevatt is incarcerated in the Washington County Detention Center on $500,000 bond on these charges. He is also being held without bond on the arrest warrant from Hagerstown City issued in 2000 for burglary. Officials in Massachusetts intend to file a detainer next week in response to the warrant on file in that state.
As a result of further investigation overnight, State Police investigators found Prevatt's girlfriend, Rene' Reynolds, 21, of Moncks Corner, South Carolina, was complicit with him during the past two days, including depicting herself as a hostage. Reynolds has been charged with felony theft by possession of stolen property, two counts of conspiracy to commit a threat of arson by use of an explosive device, and two counts of possession of controlled dangerous substances which are suspected marijuana and MDMA. Reynolds is being held in the Washington County Detention Center on $250,000 bond.
After their arrests last night, both Prevatt and Reynolds were transported by ambulance to the Washington County Hospital for medical checkups. Reynolds' late-term pregnancy was confirmed by medical personnel. Both Prevatt and Reynolds were examined and released. They were taken to the State Police Hagerstown Barracks for processing. The two were taken to the court commissioner's office about 7:00 a.m. today for their bond hearings before being held at the detention center.
In addition to the drugs found during the search of the motel room overnight, troopers also found a cache of stolen property that includes jewelry, cameras, electronic equipment and coins. Some of the property has already been positively identified as having been stolen in a residential burglary west of Hancock on August 11, 2008, in which about $17,000 worth of property was taken. Additional charges against the two are anticipated. Police found no firearms or explosives in the room.
The investigation is continuing.
 
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