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Suspect killed in standoff after alleged attempt to breach FBI office in Cincinnati

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Gunman killed in FBI standoff was at Capitol on Jan. 6
Gunman killed in FBI standoff was at Capitol on Jan. 6 02:03

A suspect was killed Thursday afternoon in a gunfire exchange with officers following an hours-long standoff in Cincinnati, Ohio, authorities said. Officials said the standoff began after the suspect attempted to breach the Cincinnati FBI field office building at around 9 a.m. and then led officers on a pursuit.

The suspect, identified by two law enforcement sources as Ricky Shiffer, ended the standoff by firing at officers, Ohio State Highway Patrol Lt. Nathan Dennis said in a news briefing Thursday evening. Officers returned fire and the suspect died on the scene. No officers were injured in the confrontation. 

Authorities did not give any indication Thursday of a possible motive for the breach, saying the incident was still under investigation. 

But hours before the attack, Shiffer appeared to post on former President Donald Trump's social media platform "TRUTH Social" to express his desire to kill federal agents. The post has since been removed by the site's moderators.

The situation unfolded at around 9 a.m., when Ohio State Highway Patrol troopers and local law enforcement agents responded to the alleged breach attempt at the FBI field office. 

A suspect raised alarms by allegedly attempting to break in through the visitor screening center. The FBI said the individual fled following an immediate response from special agents, prompting law enforcement to shut down roughly a one-mile stretch of a nearby highway and issue a lockdown warning for residents and businesses in the surrounding area. 

According to a statement from state highway patrol, officers located a Ford Crown Victoria on Interstate 71 in Warren County just after 9:30 a.m. that matched the description of the armed suspect's vehicle. The driver fled from officers and a gunshot was fired from the car.

Authorities pursued the car, and the suspect stopped at 9:53 a.m. on Smith Road in Clinton County, where he exited the car and fired shots. He used his car as a shield – and the standoff with officers began.

After attempts to negotiate were unsuccessful, officers tried to take him into custody. The suspect fired several shots around 3:42 p.m., and law enforcement returned fire, Dennis said. The suspect died on the scene. The FBI said one of its agents was involved in the gunfire exchange, saying in a statement that it was "reviewing this agent-involved shooting." 

FBI Director Christopher Wray issued a statement Thursday condemning violence and threats against the agency. 

"Unfounded attacks on the integrity of the FBI erode respect for the rule of law and are a grave disservice to the men and women who sacrifice so much to protect others," Wray said. "Violence and threats against law enforcement, including the FBI, are dangerous and should be deeply concerning to all Americans."    

Both the National Guard and the U.S. Navy confirmed to CBS News on Friday that Shiffer had once served in their ranks. The Navy said he enlisted in 1988 and left in 2003 as a Fire Control Technician 2nd Class. He joined the Florida Army National Guard in 2008 and left in 2011. 

The incident came one day after Wray delivered a warning about violent threats circulating online in the aftermath of this week's FBI search at Trump's Florida residence, Mar-a-Lago. 

"This was an appalling attack on law enforcement – my office and I are monitoring the situation as it develops," Sen. Sherrod Brown also said in a statement. "My thoughts are with all those whose lives were threatened by this attack."  

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