Out for Revenge: Gunman, Hostage Dead in Law Office Takeover
WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. (AP) _ Terry Hogan was well known at the law office where he held at least 10 hostages during a four-hour standoff. His picture was posted on the wall because he had threatened lawyers before.
On Thursday, Hogan, angry because the firm fought to cut off his worker’s compensation benefits, fatally shot an attorney trying to protect co-workers, witnesses said. Hogan killed himself before a police SWAT team stormed the building.
Millie Rodarnel was taking a smoke break outside the offices of Danielson, Clark, Pumpian and Ford when Hogan stepped out of a taxi he had carjacked and confronted them.
``He grabbed my arm and said, `OK, sweetheart. It’s OK if you just listen to me and you won’t get hurt,‴ said Rodarnel, a secretary at the firm. He ordered her and two colleagues inside.
``We had seen his pictures up in the office because he had threatened us before,″ she said.
For two years, Hogan had battled the firm, which specializes in defending insurance companies against claims by workers injured on the job. Hogan was injured by an electrical shock in 1994 while working at a condominium pool.
``He said these attorneys were making his life a living hell,″ friend John Rogers told The Miami Herald.
Neighbors said Hogan, 39, was frequently on heavy medication, and paramedics once had to help him out of bed because of pain.
``He took steps like an 80-year-old man,″ neighbor Steven Gauthier told the Sun-Sentinel in Fort Lauderdale. ``I didn’t think he would have the energy to hold a gun, much less pull the trigger.″
As the gunman entered the offices, he shouted the name of Anne Ford, who was handling his case, Rodarnel said. But attorney Kennie Edwards, 38, who did not work on his case, was killed.
``Kennie was trying to protect everyone and approached Hogan and that’s when Hogan shot him,″ Rodarnel said. ``I’m still kind of numb.″
Police talked to Hogan briefly before sending in SWAT team members. By the time they stormed the offices through a side door, he and the attorney were dead. A second attorney was wounded in the arm.