James J. Lee, Discovery Gunman, Shot Dead

A tense standoff at a Discovery Channel building in Maryland ended on Wednesday after police shot dead a gunman who held three people hostage to protest what he called was the network’s promotion of shows that are detrimental to the environment.

The hostage-taker, James J. Lee, entered the Silver Spring network building on Wednesday and took a security officer and two Discovery Communications workers at gunpoint, police records show. Aside from a gun, Lee also had explosives strapped to his body, police said. Montgomery County police negotiated with Lee for several hours, but decided to move in after the gunman was seen pointing his gun at one of the hostages.

Lee has been protesting against Discovery’s programming for years. In 2008, Lee was convicted of disorderly conduct and jailed two weeks after he organized a protest against the network by paying homeless people to troop to Discovery’s offices. In that protest, Lee caused a mad scramble after he threw cash at the homeless people. Lee also took out a newspaper ad where he alleged that “things are getting worse” because of Discovery’s “so-called environmental programs.”

Photo from Wikimedia Commons.