At least five people were killed when a man opened fire Wednesday afternoon in a bank in Sebring, Fla., according to officials. At a brief news conference, Sebring Police Chief Karl Hoglund named 21-year-old Zephen Xaver, of Sebring, as the suspect. Xaver is in police custody.
“Today has been a tragic day in our community,” Hoglund said. “We’ve suffered a significant loss at the hands of a senseless criminal doing a senseless crime.” At approximately 12:36 p.m., Sebring police and Highlands County Sheriff’s deputies responded to a SunTrust bank branch after a man called police dispatchers and said he had fired shots in the bank.
Responding law enforcement agents began negotiating with the barricaded shooter, trying to get him to surrender. A SWAT team from the sheriff’s department entered the building and continued to negotiate with the gunman until he eventually surrendered. Video footage from the scene showed a standalone, low-slung brick building with apparent damage to one of its main entrances.