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Man holds 5 hostage, including a relative, before release

January 3, 2020 GMT

FAIRFIELD, Ala. (AP) — Five people in Alabama are free after being held hostage on New Year’s Day before letting them go.

The Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office said it received a call Thursday from a woman who reported the situation at a home in Fairfield. When deputies responded, they found five people had been held against their will from about 6 p.m. Wednesday until daybreak Thursday.

WBMA-TV reported t he victims told police that the suspect held them at gunpoint, forced them to remove their clothing and then handcuffed some of them together. Police said the suspect is a relative of one of the people who was held hostage and may have been angry with members of the household for financial reasons.

The sheriff’s office said they it is searching for Aritonio Lawrence Bell, 30. Anyone with information about Bell’s whereabouts is asked to call the sheriff’s office at 205-325-1450.