The network news and the blogosphere are abuzz with the story out of Rochester, New Hampshire, in which a mentally ill man named Troy Alan Stanley took as many as five people hostage in the New Hampshire campaign office of Hilary Clinton.
The 44-year-old Stanley apparently has suffered a number of personal crises in recent months, including a divorce and the death of a close friend, who may have been a local real estate agent. Reports indicate that Stanley also has been living in the woods outside of downtown Rochester, and claims that the government has placed an electronic chip in his head.
Stanley apparently walked into the campaign office and announced that he was taking hostages, displaying what he claimed was a bomb duct-taped to his torso. A man identified as Troy Stanley, Jr., the suspect's son, said that his father only has road flares taped to his body, and Stanley reportedly told his son to "watch the news today".
Left: AP photo of police waiting in Rochester, NH on hostage suspect Troy Alan Stanley
The only demand Stanley has reportedly given so far is a request to speak with Senator Clinton. Reports indicate that at least three hostages have been released, one of whom was described as young child.
MSNBC, however, is reporting that the suspect is actually 46-year-old Leland Eisenberg and not Troy Stanley. It is not known if Leland Eisenberg is an alias of Troy Stanley, or if this is an altogether different suspect. The Rochester, NH police blog lists a Leeland Eisenberg, age 46, of Somersworth as being charged with two counts of stalking on 6 April 2007.
A man named Arnold Bennett, who claimed to be a longtime friend of Stanley, told FOX News that the suspect espoused Libertarian philosophies and often discussed "crazy" political conspiracies. A family member told a FOX News reporter that"Stanley had been on a 72-hour drinking binge" before the hostage incident.
FOX News reported that Stanley's ex-wife told police that the suspect is a "diagnosed paranoid schizophrenic" who has been prescribed lithium, and who has not been taking his medication for some time now. Stanley was arrested on 6 November 2007 by Rochester police on a bench warrant for disorderly conduct. Stanley was also charged with criminal trespass and obstructing government administration on 14 August 2007.
This item also appeared in the Barrington, NH police log 7 July 2007:
Troy A. Stanley, 44, of 201 Sofield Apartments, Rochester was charged with suspended registration and driving after revocation or suspension at 12:56 p.m. on July 27. He will appear Sept. 14 in Rochester District Court.