- The Washington Times - Wednesday, March 12, 2003

MIAMI, March 12 (UPI) — Police tactical units with dogs searched unsuccessfully Wednesday for two suspected burglars who were spotted before working hours in the 15-story Metro Bank building in Miami and disappeared.

The search lasted for six hours.

Miami-Dade County Police said they escorted employees and visitors to safety after they had holed up in bank offices and the offices of other businesses.

Busy U.S. 1, a main thoroughfare that travels through the entire county, was blocked off for 16 blocks, creating traffic congestion that stretched for miles. The barricades were removed at about 2 p.m. EST.

The incident began at about 7:30 a.m. EST when an employee said he saw the two men in a security company office on the 15th floor and presumed they were burglars. He said he chased them but they fled.

He called police and they sealed off the area and ordered the building to evacuate. Many workers and visitors holed up in offices until police came to their doors and escorted them out of the building.

There were early reports that the burglars were holding hostages, but no hostages were found.

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