On the early morning of October 15, 1980, WCPO and most of its news staff became part of a major news story when James Hoskins, armed with a 9mm J and R M68 semi-automatic rifle and five revolvers, seized control of WCPO's newsroom. Hoskins held reporter Elaine Green and her cameraman at gunpoint in the parking lot of WCPO's studios. He then forced his way into the newsroom and took seven more hostages.
A self-described terrorist, Hoskins stated in a videotaped interview with Green that he had, among other things, murdered his girlfriend before arriving at the studios. After voicing his displeasure with local government, Hoskins ended by saying that he would let his hostages go, but only after they helped him to barricade himself in their newsroom in anticipation of a shootout with police. Green and the others pleaded with Hoskins to get help, but to no avail. WCPO's news staff ran special newscasts from the parking lot throughout that morning. Hoskins eventually let all the hostages go, and the standoff ended later that morning when Hoskins shot himself dead while on the phone with SWAT negotiators. Green was awarded a Peabody Award for her handling of the crisis. She later married anchor and then-news director Al Schottelkotte. The two remained married until his death in 1996.