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Troubled man holds hostage at Toys "R' Us

A man distraught about personal problems held an employee hostage at a Toys "R" Us store for about three hours, claiming to have dynamite taped to his body, before he surrendered.

No explosives were found on Ray Sullivan's body, and "nobody was hurt," said Lt. Steve Wilkinson, a spokesman for West Melbourne police.

Sullivan, who turned 38 Sunday, was charged with two counts of kidnapping, one count of planting a hoax bomb, nine counts of aggravated assault and one count of criminal mischief, said Lisa Bourne, a spokeswoman for the Brevard County Sheriff's Office.

Sullivan initially took employees Ryan Pope and David Johnson hostage More than an hour after the standoff began, Sullivan allowed Pope to run from the store.

"It was due to negotiation for a pack of cigarettes," Wilkinson said. "He wanted a pack of cigarettes. When they delivered one of the cigarette boxes, one of the hostages was released."

Sullivan had a device about the size of a shoe box taped to his arm and claimed to have dynamite and a triggering device. A bomb squad and SWAT team members took up positions outside the store.

"What was actually on his arm was actually some kind of brace," said Brevard County Sheriff Phil Williams. "But he had a box or something configured that he claimed was an explosive device."

Hostage negotiators talked to Sullivan through a store walkie-talkie that the released hostage had carried out with him.

Sullivan, whose home is near the store, was having marriage problems, Wilkinson said.

Neighboring businesses were evacuated during the standoff and highway traffic was rerouted around the store, which is on busy U.S. 192, which links the Melbourne area with Orlando about 65 miles to the northwest.