Shortly after that, police made their decision to move in, rather than barricade Brown's home. They used diversion devices as they entered the home as food was being delivered.
Two of the firefighters had left the bedroom to retrieve the food, delivered by a SWAT officer, while the other two took cover in the bedroom, officials said.
The four firefighters suffered minor injuries during the rescue and were doing "remarkably well" Thursday morning, the county fire chief said. The police officer was recovering, according to officials.
Police have no mental health history for Brown, authorities said.
The house was foreclosed upon in November and was being prepared for sale, said Brad German, a spokesman for Freddie Mac. It was not clear what, if anything, that fact had to do with what unfolded Wednesday.
Jake Major, an 18-year-old neighbor who used to mow the alleged hostage taker's lawn, said he seemed "really nice, ... like a normal guy." His yard, though, "was a mess (and) inside it was just as bad," Major said.