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DALLAS (CBS) — A news event came to the doors of a North Texas television station early Wednesday morning… literally.
It was just after 6 a.m. (local Dallas time) when the driver of a pickup truck, who CBS 11 News sources say is Michael Chadwick Fry, repeatedly smashed the vehicle into the Fox 4 News building in downtown Dallas.
Dallas Police Department Major Max Geron said that Fry had “mental issues” and indicated “people were trying to kill him.” He also wanted media attention, according to Geron, to an officer-involved shooting from 2012 in a neighboring county.
Senior Corporal Debra Webb, with Dallas Police Department media relations, said, “Shortly after it [call] came out as a crash it got upgraded to a major disturbance when it was determined that the vehicle involved with the crash was actually intentionally ramming the building.”
Huge windows could be seen shattered and broken completely out as the truck sat against the glass, with the front end crumpled.
After the crash Fry jumped out of the truck and began yelling and throwing papers that he removed from a bag and several boxes. Boxes and papers from the bed of the truck were scattered along the front of the building.
KDFW anchor and reporter Brandon Todd, who witnessed Fry pacing outside the station before he was arrested, said the man was yelling about “high treason,” and that he believed he had clearly been wronged and that someone was trying to kill him.
“It’s not real clear to what his message was,” according to Todd.
Fry never entered the building, and was quickly handcuffed and taken into custody.
He started crying when police took him into custody, Todd said.
Webb said, “When the officers arrived out here on the scene they came in contact with the suspect, he immediately laid down on the ground and surrendered to the officers. They got him into custody without any incident.”
Police said Fry was rambling and appeared to be in some sort of agitated mental state; not making any sense.
After a number of officers arrived at the scene, the Dallas police bomb squad was called in.
“When he [suspect] did come out of his vehicle, after ramming the building, he pulled a bag out of his vehicle so we had our EOD, our bomb unit, come out here just as a precaution to check that and make sure that it wasn’t anything dangerous,” Webb said. “The bag was cleared.”
Police sent a bomb robot over to the truck to examine it before bomb squad members went to the vehicle and began searching it. K-9 officers were later brought to the scene to search vehicles parked nearby.
Fry was taken to Parkland Hospital for medical evaluation. He was released and taken to the Lew Sterrett Justice Center where he is expected to booked in on a number of charges.
Most of the journalists and workers in the newsroom were evacuated from the building. News anchors, in the middle of a newscast, were in a studio on the opposite side of the building and said they heard nothing.
Several streets in the area were closed as police investigate, affecting rush hour traffic and DART lines.
No injuries were reported.