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N.J. hostage standoff in its 2nd day

TRENTON -- A standoff with an armed man who police said took multiple hostages entered its second day yesterday as authorities worked to negotiate his surrender and his captives' safe release.

The man, whose identity has not been released, remained holed up in a two-story red brick house in South Trenton, authorities said. Trenton police Lt. Stephen Varn declined to give any details on the number of people being held, their ages or relationship to the armed man.

State Police Lt. Stephen Jones called the standoff an "ongoing, tense situation."

Police were called to the home before 3 p.m. Friday on reports that a man had barricaded himself inside. Authorities said police entered the home and found the man brandishing a gun. Police retreated safely, and a SWAT team was called in. Police continued to negotiate with the man yesterday, Varn said, and police had a robot on scene ready to enter the home.

State Police Sgt. Adam Grossman said an arson bomb unit was also on the scene. Police declined to say whether the man was making demands. Homes on the surrounding block were evacuated as a precaution.

Lt. Mark Kieffer told The Times of Trenton that police had not been called to the home before.-- AP

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