Westland mayor talks about Monday's explosives threat

Westland mayor says it wasn't 1st time suspect had entered City Hall demanding to see him

Published On: May 14 2013 06:32:24 PM EDT   Updated On: May 14 2013 07:19:10 PM EDT
WESTLAND, Mich. -

It wasn't the first time the man had stopped by the Westland mayor's office but it was the first time he claimed to have a bomb.

On Monday, he claimed to have explosives strapped to him as he entered City Hall and headed for Mayor William Wild's office. Police intervened and after an evacuation and standoff they arrested him.

"I can just say she is a very brave woman. She was in a very tough situation and she kept her head to herself," said the mayor.

That's how Mayor Wild describes his secretary who was held hostage by the man in his office. The secretary says the came went into the office and demanded to see the mayor.

The mayor, like so many others who work at Westland City Hall, was at the funeral for fallen firefighter Brian Woehlke.

Story: Emotional goodbye: Fallen Westland firefighter honored

"You know, we kind of had minimum staffing here in the offices so we could allow the employees to attend the funeral," said the mayor.

Police surrounded the building. The bomb squad was called in. Snipers had their weapons drawn. The two dozen workers at City Hall were able to get out of there, but the mayor's secretary could not.

"I guess there was a period of time when the suspect had asked her to make him coffee and she took advantage of that opportunity to be out of his eyesight. There is another exit from my office and she was able to get out of it," said Mayor Wild.

The man likely will be charge on Wednesday. No explosives were found.

In light of the incident, Westland city officials are reviewing security measures at City Hall. Right now there are no security cameras inside the building. That could be one of the first changes.