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Man claims to have bomb, triggering a 5-hour standoff in Rehoboth

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Police used stun grenades before arresting a man at this Cumberland Farms store.
Police used stun grenades before arresting a man at this Cumberland Farms store.The Boston Globe/Globe Freelance

A man who claimed to have a gun and a bomb barricaded himself inside his car at a Rehoboth Cumberland Farms Thursday morning, drawing police into a nearly five-hour standoff that ended after he allegedly rammed three police vehicles in an attempt to escape, authorities said.

Around 6:30 a.m., 38-year-old Benjamin Kimball walked into the store at the intersection of Winthrop and Anawan streets and threatened one of the employees, company officials and Rehoboth Police Chief James J. Trombetta said.

The threat led the establishment to shut off its gas pumps as customers and staff were evacuated, according to Cumberland Farms.

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Kimball returned to his car, police said, and leaned out the window, grabbed a hose, and unsuccessfully tried to light gasoline on fire.

Police, including tactical officers, surrounded him and cordoned off the area around the store, Trombetta said during a news conference. Rehoboth police and area SWAT teams shut down the intersection and evacuated the area, the chief said.

Almost five hours after the standoff began, Kimball tried to flee as police approached in armored vehicles. Television news cameras showed the trucks surrounding Kimball's car, which was parked next to a pump.

"He jumped over into the driver's seat, threw the car into reverse, and rammed one of the vehicles that was blocking his escape," Trombetta said. "He then exited the vehicle and attempted to flee on foot."

Police said they used stun grenades before Kimball got out of the vehicle, according to a report in The Sun Chronicle.

He was taken down by a police K-9 unit and apprehended at 11:30 a.m., police said.

The dog bit Kimball as he fell to the ground, Trombetta said, and the suspect was taken to Morton Hospital in Taunton. Three officers were monitoring him there.

Police did not say Thursday whether they found a bomb or a gun in the car.

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The store reopened around 2:30 p.m., according to Cumberland Farms.

"We are so grateful for the help of the local police forces and all authorities who rushed to ensure the safety of our employees and the community," its statement said.


Andy Rosen of the Globe
staff contributed to this
report. Dylan McGuinness
can be reached at dylan.mcguinness
@globe.com
. Follow him
on Twitter at @DylMcGuinness.