Nordstrom Rack suspects sought after 14 hostages are freed
Police searched early Friday for two men who took 14 hostages in a Nordstrom Rack store in Westchester.
The hostages have since been freed, but media are reporting that some had been assaulted.
Two suspects entered the store around 11 p.m. Thursday. Someone inside the store called police. Los Angeles Police Department SWAT officers arrived and surrounded the store, according to police sources.
At one point, one of the suspects left the store, saw police and ran back inside. A second suspect walked out with an unidentified woman, saw police and headed back to the store.
The officers entered the store at 3:30 a.m. and freed 14 people -- employees and possibly customers -- huddled in a storage room.
The incident occurred at the Promenade at Howard Hughes Center, near the 405 Freeway. The LAPD had called a tactical alert and closed off the area around the shopping center. KTLA-TV said that two other hostages were found in a restroom.When officers arrived at the scene, they observed a man coming out of the store, according to LAPD Lt. Andy Neiman. They attempted to make contact with the man, who looked at the officers and then ran back inside.
Moments later, they saw another man come out, accompanied by a woman.
That man “then looked in the officers’ direction, grabbed that female and forced her back into the location,” Neiman said.
The area has since been reopened and police were in the process of interviewing the hostages. No vehicle description was immediately available, Neiman said.
-- Andrew Blankstein