Stakeout at Roby Ridge?

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ROBY, Ill.: Most of the lawmen are pulling back. The Barry Manilow and Beatles music that once rocked the mounted loudspeakers has been shut off. Yet, the 11-day siege continues, and 51-year-old widow Shirley Ann Allen, well-armed and said to be handy with a shotgun, is still inside her farmhouse in Roby, near Springfield. Ms. Allen had been involuntarily committed by her relatives for psychiatric testing after turning from an "outgoing, friendly person to a recluse whose erratic behavior could endanger herself." Such a commitment is legal under Illinois state law and now it's up to state police, who must follow through on the warrant, to get her out.

State Police director Terrance Gainer has eased off on the Fujimori-style tactics, and given Ms. Allen a chance to relax. But while the standoff grinds on uneventfully, TIME Midwest correspondent Julie Grace reports that 'Roby Ridge' is fast becoming a hot local issue. "The local anti-gun groups have been after the governor to tighten up on gun-ownership. Talk radio has latched onto it. And privately, police officials are concerned that militia involvement could escalate the situation, though that hasn't happened yet." Shirley, meanwhile, is reported to be well-stocked inside with both canned goods and ammunition. This one could take a while.