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HPD: Suspect in custody following brief hostage situation at Scottish Rite Masonic Center in southwest Houston

Witnesses told police that a man showed up at the center claiming he wanted to talk to them about their belief system.

HOUSTON — A suspect is in custody following a brief hostage situation inside the Scottish Rite Masonic Center in southwest Houston, according to the Houston Police Department.

Police say SWAT and hostage negotiators responded just after 10 a.m. to a building near 2401 West Bellfort Avenue, which is in southwest Houston near NRG Stadium.

Witnesses told police that a man showed up at the center claiming he wanted to talk to them about their belief system. However, because of his demeanor, they refused to let him in and started calling 911.

The suspect then broke a window to gain entry into the building, police said. He then took two men hostage, a 91-year-old and a 65-year-old.

As soon as police responded to the scene, entered the building and made contact with the suspect, who was on an upstairs landing, he released the 91-year-old man, police said. The hostage had suffered an injury to his hand.

Police said the suspect seemed to be very erratic.

Witnesses initially reported that they heard the suspect fire shots during the incident, but police said it was likely just him breaking the glass window. He appeared to only be armed with a screwdriver.

Once it was clear he was not armed with a firearm, officers pushed forward on the suspect's position and he surrendered without further incident, police said. The second hostage was not injured.

Police it is not clear why the suspect came to the location in the first place. His charges will be determined by the Harris County District Attorney's Office.

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