Last hostages freed in Chicago-area standoff

Police enter a building Wednesday in Harvey, Illinois, ending a standoff where the last of four hostages were released unharmed and two armed men were taken into custody. (WLS-TV Chicago)

HARVEY, Ill. -- About two dozen heavily armed law enforcement officers stormed a home in Chicago's southern suburbs Wednesday to free four remaining hostages and capture two suspects, ending a standoff that lasted more than 20 hours.

The two adults and two children still being held at the home in the small city of Harvey were freed midmorning without a shot fired, said Cook County Sheriff Tom Dart.

Footage shot by a TV news helicopter showed officers with armor, shields and rifles sweeping in through the front door as other officers aimed weapons and took cover near two large armored vehicles that were parked out front.

Officers ran out of the house with the remaining hostages then brought out two men in handcuffs.

The standoff began at 12:45 p.m. Tuesday when police in Harvey responded to a neighbor's report of a possible burglary at the home. Two officers were wounded in an initial exchange of gunfire, and the two suspects barricaded themselves inside the home with eight captives. Four children among them were freed overnight after hours of talks.

Dart said negotiators were in "constant contact" with the hostage-takers throughout the night and into the morning until a decision was made to storm the house.

Officers found the hostages on the second floor.

"We were able to take everyone down without any injuries to anybody and without shots being fired," Dart said.

Keyser reported from Chicago.