ST. CLOUD -- After a stand-off that lasted more than eight hours, St. Cloud police arrested a man who was holding five hostages Thursday night.

St. Cloud Police Chief Blair Anderson says it all began at about 1:45 p.m. when a man who was upset over a prior dispute entered the Wells Fargo bank. By the time officers arrived several customers and employees fled the bank but five employees remained inside with the suspect.

Anderson says they were never sure if he had a weapon.

Throughout the incident, we were not clear whether or not the suspect had a weapon.  The investigation is still active.

An update from the St. Cloud Police Department on Friday morning says no gun was found on McNeary, or at the scene.

Anderson says negotiators made contact with the suspect in every possible way including writing notes and putting them up against the window.

Ray Reco MnNeary/Stearns County Jail
Ray Reco MnNeary/Stearns County Jail

The suspect has been identified as 35-year-old Ray Reco McNeary a man familiar to local police.

We've had numerous contacts with this individual dating back at least a decade including violent crime.  Right now he's being held on charges related to bank robbery and kidnapping.

NcNeary was supposed to be in court Thursday for a violent offense.

Anderson says throughout the evening some of the hostages were released by the suspect, while others fled when they saw an opportunity.

The last hostage that was being held took his chance and made a run for the door, and as he was running toward the door both tactical units -- from St. Cloud PD and FBI -- made a simultaneous entry and took the suspect into custody without incident.

At one point during the evening, McNeary opened the door to the bank and threw out a fist full of cash.

Stearns County Attorney Janelle Kendall says she is in communication with the U.S. Attorney's Office to determine which agency should take the case.

FBI Special Agent In Charge Michael Paul says it was actually McNeary who requested the FBI crisis negotiators be brought in.

FBI agents, State Patrol, and several local police departments assisted with the incident.

(Photo: Jim Maurice)
(Photo: Jim Maurice)
KDHL Radio logo
Get our free mobile app

More From KDHL Radio