HOUSTON (Reuters) - Workers evacuated a building at NASA's Johnson Space Center and police surrounded it on Friday after reports that a man with a gun was spotted and shots were fired, authorities said.
NASA spokeswoman Brandi Dean said it was not known if anyone was hurt and Kelly Humphries, another spokesperson, said it was not yet known if there had indeed been gunshots.
The incident added to jitters across America after a student gunman killed 32 people Virginia Tech university, the in the worst shooting rampage in the nation's modern history.
Television reports said the gunman at the Johnson Space Center was barricaded inside building that houses a communication system, but police spokeswoman Johanna Abad could not confirm that.
Abad said police went to the center in the Houston suburbs after receiving reports of a gunman and that shots had been fired. She said Special Weapons and Tactics, or SWAT, teams had been sent to affected building.
NASA said police were surrounding the building and employees in nearby buildings had been asked to stay in their offices.
It is being reported by Fox right now (3:34 AZ time)that the gunman killed one hostage and then himself.
[Update] Fox also has a text message from a middle school student:
Text messages from a student in the middle school, received by a FOX 26 News employee, read:
2:41 PM CST
"MOM I HAVE A BIG STORY FOR YOU FOR FOX"
2:48 PM CST
"WE ARE IN LOCK-DOWN. CAN'T TALK"
2:53 PM CST
"THEY SAY THAT THERE IS A GUNMAN AT JOHNSON SPACE CENTER. BUILDING 44, AND THE DOOR KEEPS GETTING PUSHED AND HANDLE IS GETTING JIGGLED. THE HANDLE TO THE DOOR IN THE PORTABLES [CLASSROOM]."
3:05 PM CST
"[WE] ARE IN THE PORTABLES CLOSEST TO THE SPACE CENTER BUILDING."
3:06 PM CST
"...THERE ARE SOME PEOPLE REALLY FREAKING OUT."
3:14 PM CST
"THEY ARE SAYING STUFF LIKE OMG, WE ARE ALL GOING TO DIE. GOING INTO HISTERICS AND CRYING A WHOLE LOT AND SWEARING A WHOLE BUNCH."
3:18 PM CST
"OKAY. THEY GAVE US THE ALL-CLEAR."
3:34 PM CST
"THEY HAVE PUT OFF ALL AFTER-SCHOOL ACTIVITIES."
KHOU.com is also reporting on this.
[Update] More news coming out from AP, Texas Kaos, and Wizbang.
Keep up with this story at memeorandum.
More as it comes out.