Among the several exercises during the weekend "Urban Shield" first-responder drills was a simulated hostage taking inside the Boston City Council chambers at City Hall.
SWAT cops from around the Boston area first navigated their way up a darkened set of stairs to the fifth floor, then, as they scanned a hallway with their guns, made their way into the chambers.
Reporters and photographers, kept back from the immediate action, heard a sudden burst of screaming as the cops moved in. We were briefly allowed in to see what happened next: Hostages and hostage takers - some now "dead" - were pulled out of seats in the visitors' area while SWAT officers looked under desks and up at Council President Bill Linehan's podium for more possible bad guys and victims.
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