Friday, May 24, 2013

Father with criminal past uses son as hostage

On 05/23/13 at approx. 10:18 p.m., Fife Officers responded to a reported Domestic Violence Assault at a residence in the 200 block of 55th Ave E.  The initial report was that a mother was being assaulted by her adult son, and that the mother was also running down the street asking to “send help”.     Officers contacted the mother, who had responded to the residence to assist with the care of her 4 year old grandson.   The suspect, highly intoxicated and depressed over the death of a close friend, had called his mother to come and care for his child.   The mother was initially allowed to remove the child, but the suspect’s demeanor suddenly changed and he became aggressive.  The suspect forcibly removed the child from his mother’s vehicle and re-entered the residence.   The mother was concerned for her grandchild’s welfare and entered the residence.   The suspect physically assaulted the mother, grabbing her arm, striking her, and preventing her from calling 911.    The mother fled the residence, calling 911 for assistance.  Officers have responded numerous times to this location for violent crimes involving the suspect.     The suspect is flagged in a law enforcement database as being armed and dangerous, with prior hostile contacts with Law Enforcement and numerous prior arrests.    

Officers arrived and began speaking with the suspect over the telephone.    The suspect informed Officers that he would not release the child, would not come to the door, and was armed with a pistol.    The suspect was observed walking on the second floor of the residence, using the child as a shield, and at one point he actually held the child out the window.    Pierce Metro SWAT was activated and responded to the scene.  

Negotiators spoke with the suspect for several hours, attempting to convince him to release the child.    Eventually, the suspect agreed to release the child, but only to the child’s grandmother.    At approx. 0245 hours, the suspect moved the child to the front porch of the residence.    While on the porch, the suspect attempted to pull the child back into the residence.   Pierce Metro SWAT then engaged the suspect, and the suspect was struck by gunfire.   The child was removed to safety, and medics with the Tacoma Fire Department began to treat the suspect.    The suspect was transported to St. Joseph’s hospital where he died as a result of his injuries.   

Currently, the Pierce Metro Crime Response Unit is processing the scene and the investigation is ongoing.     The child and grandmother are safe, and have been reunited with the child’s mother.