Five people are shot dead during ‘hostage situation’ after a gunman opened fire inside bank 

Five people were shot dead after a 21-year-old gunman opened fire inside a Florida bank Wednesday afternoon. 

The Sebring Police Department said on Facebook that officers responded to the SunTrust Bank branch located at 1901 US 27 South around 12.36pm.

Authorities said the suspect, identified as Zephen Xaver, had called dispatch to report that he had fired shots inside the bank. 

Initial reports said multiple people had been injured during the shooting, but authorities confirmed during a press conference that five people had been ‘senselessly murdered’.

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Five people were shot dead after a gunman opened fire inside a SunTrust Bank (pictured) in Florida Wednesday afternoon

Five people were shot dead after a gunman opened fire inside a SunTrust Bank (pictured) in Florida Wednesday afternoon

Five people were shot dead after a gunman opened fire inside a SunTrust Bank (pictured) in Florida Wednesday afternoon

The Sebring Police Department said on Facebook that officers responded to the bank located at 1901 US 27 South around 12.36pm

The Sebring Police Department said on Facebook that officers responded to the bank located at 1901 US 27 South around 12.36pm

The Sebring Police Department said on Facebook that officers responded to the bank located at 1901 US 27 South around 12.36pm

Authorities said the suspect had called dispatch to report that he had fired shots inside the bank

Authorities said the suspect had called dispatch to report that he had fired shots inside the bank

Authorities said the suspect had called dispatch to report that he had fired shots inside the bank

The identities of the victims have not been released pending notification of next of kin. 

It’s unclear if those killed consists of bank employees or customers inside the bank during the incident. 

Sebring police and deputies from the Highlands County Sheriff’s Office responded to the scene and established a perimeter.

A witness recorded footage of officers setting up the perimeter as they carefully planned their next move.  

A witness recorded footage of officers setting up the perimeter as they carefully planned their next move

A witness recorded footage of officers setting up the perimeter as they carefully planned their next move

Officials confirmed that there were multiple injuries, but it's unclear how man people were shot in the incident

Officials confirmed that there were multiple injuries, but it's unclear how man people were shot in the incident

Officials confirmed that there were multiple injuries, but it’s unclear how man people were shot in the incident. Police didn’t release information regarding the conditions of those injured

Live video from the scene showed medical gurneys outside the bank.

Police say initial negotiations to get the barricaded man to leave the bank were unsuccessful. 

The Highlands County Sheriff’s Office SWAT team entered the bank to continue the negotiations, and the suspect eventually surrendered.

The shooting and standoff closed the city’s main street in both directions.

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