THE STANDOFF STARTS
The standoff started after SPD responded to a call by the suspect’s wife, who asked police to convince the man to get some help for “mental health issues,” Whelan said.
He said he responded to the call shortly before noon and found the suspect.
“I encountered him in the backyard of another resident. He was, at that time, armed with two weapons (handguns), and he also had his two young children with him at the time of that first encounter,” Whelan said.
The suspect’s children are a 16-year-old son and a girl, believed to be 4.
Whelan added that the suspect pointed the gun at him, but did not fire a shot.
Whelan said the suspect, when initially confronted said, “He knew what we were wanting from him, which is when he initially pointed the weapon at me and had his children with him.”
“He let go of the children, I got them out of the way, and the pursuit, at that time, was on,” Whelan said earlier in the day.
A foot chase led the suspect through the Hill N’ Dale subdivision to a home on Delaware Court, where he kicked in the door. There was no one home at the residence and the standoff with police began.
Police officers from several agencies, including several SWAT teams, surrounded the house.
Whelan said during the course of the standoff, “40 or so” gas canisters were fired into the home and, eventually, police shut off the power to the residence, but the suspect remained hunkered inside.
“How someone could sustain that, I don’t know,” Whelan said.
Whelan said the home was “unlivable” following the incident.
A police robot was also sent into the home during the standoff to try and communicate with the suspect.
However, Whelan said the suspect had not been communicating with the officers that surrounded the home and he shot out the cameras on the robot so police could not see inside the home.