For seven days a survivalist nutjob has been holding a little boy hostage in his Alabama bunker
The nutjob in question, Jimmy Lee Dykes, stormed on to a school bus and tried to kidnap two boys. The bus driver fought back and was murdered by Mr. Dykes. Dykes succeeded in taking one five-year-old boy hostage and has been holed up in his bunker ever since, communicating with police through a tube.
Federal law enforcement agencies are conducting the negotiations through a PVC ventilation pipe that leads into the bunker. According to an Associated Press report, authorities are also using the pipe to deliver medicine and comfort items, such as a coloring book, a Hot Wheels toy car, and Cheez-Its crackers to the boy, Ethan, who Dykes abducted from a Dale County school bus Tuesday after allegedly shooting the driver to death.
On Sunday, residents of the area laid the bus driver, Charles Albert Poland, Jr., 66, to rest in nearby Ozark, Ala. Poland was remembered as a hero who tried to stop Dykes from taking a child hostage.
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Details of Dykes' life that emerged Sunday painted a picture of a troubled man. According to the AP, Dykes is a Vietnam veteran, but it is not clear if he served in combat. He lived in Florida for some time before moving back to Midland City, where Dykes grew up. While in Florida, Dykes was arrested for improper exhibition of a weapon, a misdemeanor charge that was dropped. He has also been arrested for marijuana possession.
Dykes is estranged from his family, according to AP.
In recent months, neighbors said Dykes beat a dog nearly to death with a pipe, and menaced a neighbor with a gun.
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