LAS VEGAS (KVVU) — A 29-hour hostage situation and barricade ended Thursday with an arrest and safe negotiation of its subjects, Las Vegas police said in a news conference.
On May 26 about 10:30 a.m., police in Enterprise Area Command near the 8000 block of Dean Martin Drive and Blue Diamond Road identified a stolen vehicle and motorcycle during “proactive activity of a high-crime area,” Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department Deputy Chief Sasha Larkin said.
At the time of the investigation, what began as a stolen property altercation quickly evolved into both a barricade and ultimately a hostage situation, police said. A Hispanic man got into a physical confrontation with a patrol officer who was attempting a “low-level takedown.” Their interaction changed when the subject took out a gun from his vest shirt, Larkin said.
At that time, patrol units requested assistance from SWAT as the man retreated into his apartment, creating a barricade event. Police then heard a shot ring out in the direction of officers from inside the motel.
While barricaded, the man used tools, a hammer and saw, to cut his way into the neighboring unit. It was then that the suspect took a female babysitter and 4-year-old boy hostage. The motel was quickly evacuated and nearby businesses could not be accessed.
While the evacuees were without a place to stay, the nearby gym Dragon’s Lair welcomed some of them in to use the restroom and charge their phones.
“Cars had been left there. Some of them couldn’t even go to their jobs,” Dragon’s Lair owner Flex Lewis said. “So they had nowhere to go so they found refuge under our awning. We ordered six massive pizzas, some water and some drinks.”
SWAT worked to safely remove the victims from the apartment via cell phone communication, Larkin said. Throughout the afternoon, officers could be heard yelling, “Pick up the phone, Antonio!”
Wednesday afternoon the 4-year-old was released and SWAT safely escorted the child out.
“That’s when we started hearing bangs and next thing we know SWAT was running with child to the bar, and asked my bartender to go ahead and keep him calm,” Stephanie Najera, who manages the bar on the property of the motel, said.
The man repeatedly told authorities his hostages were not free to leave. Over the course of 29 hours, SWAT officers were able to use de-escalation techniques to remove the little boy, and then the babysitter. The suspect eventually surrendered “peacefully with his hands up,” Larking said.
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The man, identified in police booking records as 24-year-old Antionio BarryEdwards, was taken into custody and booked into the Clark County Detention Center. He now faces multiple charges, including: assault with a deadly weapon, resisting arrest, carrying a concealed weapon without a permit, kidnapping, attempted murder on a police officer and crimes connected to a stolen vehicle.
The suspects family watched as he was taken away in a police vehicle. The grandmother of the suspect told FOX5 she grateful for the police negotiators that ended the standoff safely.
“This is the kind of thing that the LVMPD SWAT team and negotiators train for and prepare for,” Larkin said.
No injuries were reported during the incident. The investigation is ongoing.
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