Police Kill Protester Who Took Hostages in Discovery Channel Building

SILVER SPRING, Maryland, September 1, 2010 (ENS) – Police shot to death a gunman who held three hostages for several hours at the Discovery Communications building in Silver Spring. The hostages were not injured.

A man protesting the nature of the Discovery Channel’s environmental programming held hostages inside the building this afternoon. Montgomergy County Police shut down all traffic in the surrounding area and were negotiating with the man, identified as James Jay Lee, before they shot him.

James Jay Lee (Photo from Lee’s MySpace page)

Police Chief J. Thomas Manger told reporters at the scene that about 1 pm this man entered the building with metallic objects strapped to his body front and back and carrying a handgun.

He described the incident as “an ongoing hostage situation.”

Most of the Discovery Channel’s 1,900 workers were evacuated and so were the children of workers in a day care center on the same floor as the intruder.

Lee had protested outside the Discovery Building for years and in 2008 was arrested and pled guilty to disorderly conduct for an incident where he threw cash into the air outside the building in order to attract a crowd. The judge in that case warned him to stay outside a perimeter of 500 feet away from the building and threatened him with 60 days in jail if he did not comply.

On Lee’s MySpace page he described himself as from Hawaii, single and straight, 5’11” tall, and gives his occupation as “research.”

The comments on Lee’s page show he told his friends he wants to “save the world.”

The page says “It’s Time for a Revolution” and gives a glimpse of his environmental concerns which are overpopulation and extinction of species.

Lee said on his website, SaveThePlanetProtest, “All programs on Discovery Health-TLC must stop encouraging the birth of any more parasitic human infants and the false heroics behind those actions.”

“In those programs’ places, programs encouraging human sterilization and infertility must be pushed. All former pro-birth programs must now push in the direction of stopping human birth, not encouraging it.”

Lee said on MySpace he wants to meet, “Environmentalists, scientists, readers of Daniel Quinn, and people who want to work toward a real change.”

The Discovery Channel is distinguished by running more environmental programming than most other television channels. Discovery broadcasts Planet Green, a cable brand promoted as the first 24-hour channel dedicated to eco-friendly living.

Discovery’s Planet Earth, hosted by Sigourney Weaver and produced in partnership with The Nature Conservancy, features shows on caves, freshwater, forests, and the deep ocean. And Discovery also broadcasts Animal Planet, which includes the series, “Whale Wars” about the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society’s battle against Japanese whaling in the Southern Ocean. Online, the Discovery Channel is represented by Treehugger.

Copyright Environment News Service (ENS) 2010. All rights reserved.