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2 bodies found after NJ standoff; suspect killed

Police officers stood guard near a house where an armed man with multiple hostages was barricaded in Trenton, N.J.

Eduardo Munoz/REUTERS

Police officers stood guard near a house where an armed man with multiple hostages was barricaded in Trenton, N.J.

TRENTON, N.J. (AP) — The bodies of a woman and a 13-year-old boy were found after a dayslong standoff at a home, and a suspect was killed as officers rescued three children who had been held captive, authorities said Sunday.

Police officers went to the South Trenton home Friday afternoon after reports that some of the children hadn’t been to school in 12 days. Officers said they entered the home through a rear door and smelled an odor consistent with that of a decomposing body.

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They found 38-year-old Gerald Tyrone Murphy in an upstairs bedroom, and he told them he was armed with a gun and explosives. Authorities retreated from the home, rescuing a 19-year-old man from the basement, who said he hadn’t seen his mother or sisters since about April 24.

The standoff ended at about 3:45 a.m. Sunday, 37 hours after it began, when officers stormed the house and shot Murphy because he was threatening one of the children, authorities said. Murphy was taken into custody and later died of his injuries.

Authorities found the body of a woman and a 13-year-old boy inside the home. The woman’s body was in an advanced state of decomposition, and police said she appeared to have died two weeks ago.

Three of her children — an 18-year-old woman, a 16-year-old girl and a 4-year-old boy were rescued and taken to a medical center for evaluation and treatment.

Police said Tyrone was a registered sex offender with a long criminal history including convictions for aggravated assault and criminal conspiracy. He had previously been arrested for robbery and weapons offenses and child endangerment.

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