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Virginia police search for armed man at USA Today headquarters

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By Alex Dobuzinskis

(Reuters) – The headquarters of USA Today in suburban Washington was evacuated on Wednesday following reports of a man with a weapon, the national newspaper said, but there were no indications of any violence or injuries.

Police officers with rifles surrounded and entered the building in McLean, Virginia, according to images posted on social media.

The police response followed an emergency 911 call to dispatchers from someone who reported an ex-employee had shown up armed, Virginia County Police Chief Edwin Roessler Jr said at a news conference.

“We’re operating on best information from the 911 call and we’re treating this as real until it’s resolved,” Roessler told reporters at the scene.

Hundreds of office workers at the building, which houses other firms besides the newspaper, were brought outside by police, the USA Today reported on its website.

Roessler said he could not immediately say whether the potentially armed man was a former employee of USA Today, which is owned by Gannet Co Inc <GCI.N>, or had worked for another group at the building.

Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department has no reports of injuries at the site, said spokeswoman Ashley Hildebrandt, but she added that it was a “fluid situation.”

The evacuation followed gun massacres in El Paso, Texas, and Dayton, Ohio, over the weekend in which more than 30 people were killed.

(Reporting by Alex Dobuzinskis in Los Angeles; Editing by Alistair Bell and Grant McCool)

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