MANCHESTER – Township police averted a tragedy by deescalating a situation in which a township man, armed with a semi-automatic rifle threatened a family with death.
During the early morning hours of November 9 township police responded to an incident at a Pine Lake Park residence. A family member had reported to police a male occupant of the residence was acting irrationally and was in the process of loading a semi-automatic rifle.
The caller also advised police dispatch that the 25-year-old man suffered from mental illness member that he wanted to “kill people.” As officers made their way to the scene, police dispatch instructed the caller and all other occupants of the residence to leave the area for a safe location.
The caller remained on the phone after departing from the residence and was able to provide dispatch with important information regarding the male’s actions.
Upon arrival, officers met with the caller, who told them that the disturbed man had opened a second story window, removed the screen and established what she described as a “sniper hide.”
After receiving this information and ensuring that no one was inside the residence except the man, officers carefully and tactically approached the residence. They were able to make verbal contact with him and convinced him to leave the residence without incident.
The man was subsequently transported to the Community Medical Center Psychiatric Emergency Screening Services Unit for a mental health evaluation.
A search of the residence resulted in the recovery of a loaded rifle in the male’s room, along with a large quantity of ammunition. Additionally, officers located a second rifle concealed in the attic.
“I am extremely proud of the officers and the police dispatcher for the way they handled this call. These department members did an outstanding job de-escalating a situation which could have easily ended in tragedy. At the end of the day, our goal is to ensure the safety of our community and officers and today we were able to accomplish that goal.”
Manchester Police, like many other local police agencies, offers information on the proper storage of firearms and also offers assistance in the destruction of unwanted firearms/weapons.
The township police department offers a free destruction program which only requires the possessor to the sign a form of destruction at police headquarters. Residents are reminded to keep all weapons properly secured at all times. Information regarding the storage/destruction of firearms/weapons can be directed to Detective Sergeant Hemhauser at 732-657-2009 extension 4207.