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(UPDATE 5:30 PM Tuesday 11/10/09: The Jefferson City Police Department has held a news conference explaining that a woman from the building claimed to have heard over the intercom that there was a hostage situation in the building, which set off a chain of events leading to the lockdown. Officials are not using the term "false alarm," but there appears to have been no hostage situation, and no shots were fired.)
Law enforcement officers evacuated state workers from the Governor Office Building in downtown Jefferson City today. Though there were initial reports of a possible hostage situation, those reports have not been confirmed. Details about the circumstances that led to the lockdown are still unclear. The office building is located across the street from the grounds of the Governor's Mansion. Despite the building's name, it does not house Governor Jay Nixon's office. KSMU’s Missy Shelton spoke with state employee Mark Hughes during today’s lockdown at the Governor Office Building. He was on the ninth floor of the building for the entire lockdown. Hughes is an advisor to Public Service Commissioner Jeff Davis. This is part of the conversation between KSMU’s Missy Shelton and Mark Hughes prior to the building being evacuated.
Shelton: Mark, have you heard anything unusual or seen anything that would be alarming?Hughes: As soon as we received the report, the chairman directed ninth floor staff to contact individuals on each floor. Each floor has a safety officer and because of the confidential nature of some of the material we deal with in litigating cases, floors are locked and accessed by a magnetic card key system. We were directed to contact each floor to locate any unusual activity. The safety officer on each floor was responsible for contacting each employee who is supposed to be on that floor or working in the field and verify their location. We have done that and are now standing by for evacuation so the police can search the entire building.Shelton: So as far as you know, everything just went by the book, in terms of procedure and there weren’t any reports of anything unusual?Hughes: Not to my knowledge. The police are asking me to leave now.Shelton: Ok. Thanks so much Mark.Hughes: Bye.Shelton: Bye.