UPDATE: Winters has been apprehended. We're gathering more information and have a reporter heading to a press conference that begins at 12:30 p.m.
VALRICO, Fla. (WFLA.com) - The FBI is offering a $5,000 reward for information that leads to the arrest of 55-year-old Martin Howard Winters, who is the head of a “doomsday preppers” group, and is accused of making destructive devices.
Teams of FBI agents and ATF agents swarmed Valrico property owned by Winters. Residents in the area were kept out of their homes for hours as local and federal law enforcement officers searched for Winters.
On Tuesday, the roads were no longer blocked and the search teams were no longer visible.
Neighbor Frank Foster says officers came to his home, pounding on his door as they were looking for Winters.
"The door bell rang, several times, hard," said Foster. "I jumped from the table and went to the front door, nobody there."
Foster did not answer the door, but he did arm himself.
"I said 'I've got a .38 in my hand, and it's loaded with my finger on the trigger and if you knock that door down, I'm going to blow your head off'," Foster recounted to News Channel 8.
Foster lives several miles from Winters’ home, but not far from where federal authorities first tried to arrest Winters on Monday morning.
Others in the area say they saw SWAT tanks rolling down the street and dozens of police cars.
Officers wearing camouflage clothing lay in the grass, setting up a perimeter as the initial search for Winters was underway and a Blackhawk Helicopter circled overheard.
Federal authorities have an arrest warrant for Winters for the illegal purchase of firearms and for making "explosive devices."
Photo Credit WFLA.com