Body armor attempts to breach FBI screening area, exchange gunfire

Body armor attempts to breach FBI screening area, exchange gunfire

An armed man dressed in body armor tried to breach a security screening area at an FBI field office in Ohio on Thursday, then fled and exchanged gunfire in a standoff with law enforcement, authorities said.

The FBI's Cincinnati field office comes as officials warn of an increase in threats against federal agents in the days following a search of Donald Trump's Mar-a-Lago estate in Florida.

Federal officials said the man had tried to breach the visitors screening area at the FBI office and fled when he was confronted by agents. He was chased onto Interstate 71 and exchanged gunfire with police, according to the Clinton county emergency management agency.

The police remained in a standoff, and authorities closed the interstate in both directions. There were no injuries immediately reported.

Officials in Ohio have locked down a mile radius near the interstate, and have urged residents and business owners to lock doors and stay inside.

According to multiple media reports, an FBI evidence team arrived at the office to investigate.

There have been growing threats against FBI agents and offices in the country since federal agents executed a search warrant in Mar-a-Lago. Federal officials have been tracking an array of chatter on Gab and other platforms that threaten violence against federal agents. Christopher Wray, FBI director, denounced the threats when he visited another FBI office in Nebraska on Wednesday.

No matter who you are upset with, violence against law enforcement is not the answer, according to Wray in Omaha.

The FBI warned its agents to avoid protesters and ensure their security key cards are not visible outside the FBI space, citing an increase in social media threats to bureau personnel and facilities. It warned agents to be aware of their surroundings and potential protesters.

The warning did not specifically mention this week s search of Mar-a-Lago, but it attributed the online threats to recent media reports on FBI investigative activity.