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Viernheim Theater Gunman Has Been Killed: German Officials

Andy Eckardt, Alexander Smith and Matthew Grimson
Reports of 25 injuries at German theater

A gunman who reportedly opened fire and took hostages in a German movie theater complex Thursday has been shot dead, according to officials.

Local media including the Bild newspaper were first to report on the incident at the Kinopolis movie complex in the southwestern town of Viernheim. It said special forces were on the scene.

Footage from outside the theater showed heavily-armed police strapping on bulletproof vests and running towards the building as sirens blared.

Local Interior Minister Peter Beuth told a parliamentary debate that initial reports suggested that a gunman fired several shots, took hostages and was later shot dead by police.

There were no other injuries and the hostages are all safe, police confirmed to NBC News.

Police have not identified the suspect or a potential motive behind the incident.

German journalist Frank Seifert said the suspect had something resembling a rifle.

"A lot of children were in the cinema," he told the BBC.

Viernheim, a town of about 32,000, is about 45 miles south of Frankfurt.

Streets around the movie theater were blocked off and a police helicopter hovered in the air after the incident ended. Heavily-armed police special forces remained in position around local buildings.

The cinema had several movies listed to show throughout the afternoon, including Hollywood productions like Alice in Wonderland and Angry Birds.

This is a developing story. Please check back for updates.