Aliens in This World

An ordinary Catholic and a science fiction and fantasy fan.

Tuesday, February 25, 2003

SWAT Team in My Apartment Building Update

Look! It's my building! Somewhat inaccurate story, though. And isn't it creepy how so many news stories prove inaccurate, whenever you know something about the story? That looks like the ambulance there, but it came later in the day. The one outside my window this morning was an orange truck, and shaped very differently.

It was the nutty guy downstairs. He was about to get evicted this week, and that process has just gotten a lot easier. He's always been prone to run around banging doors and yelling (which is why my poor body ignored all that pounding on doors this morning by the police), and he started doing it this morning at 3:30 or so, continuing till 4 or 4:30. I, like most people in the building, turned over and went to sleep as much as his noise allowed. Then the police came and he retreated to his apartment (as he always does). He got relatively quiet; I got to get some real sleep. However, this time when the police stood outside talking to him, he added a new line to his usual ones of "You don't have a warrant!", various obscenities, threats to call a senator, and "I'm not coming out!"). He announced that he had a gun on his hip. He later elaborated this to say that it was a .357 Magnum, that he also had a rifle, that anyone who came through the door was going to the morgue, and that he would then kill himself.

Understandably, the police took the guy's threats seriously; they couldn't afford not to, with him as loopy as he is and on drugs, too. So the SWAT team arrived around 6:30 AM (I'm not sure when he made the gun threat, but it wasn't long after that) and pounded on everybody's doors, including mine. However, I was dead to the world, as you'd expect if you went to bed after midnight and was awakened again at 4 in the morning. I wasn't the only one who slept through it all, either -- one woman who lived on his floor managed it, too. The awakened people were shooed off to the office side of the building, out of danger, or allowed to leave and go to work early. Then the SWAT team took over the apartment across the hall from me as a command post, and used the apartment next to mine to practice entries. I remained dead to the world.

I woke up at 7:15, got ready for work as normal, and then dragged myself out, only to see a whole SWAT team entering my next door neighbor's apartment, with him looking on and his dog barking away inside. What's a bit scary is that I managed to stand there gaping for a couple minutes before the SWAT guys even noticed I was there! But then, they knew the place was locked down. We looked at each other with some startlement, one of the officers quietly explained to me what was going on, and I was sent on my way to work down the stair. The guy guarding the stairwell looked out for me to see it was safe for me to pass the nutty guy's floor, and then I went on my way.

The guy finally surrendered about 10 AM. He had no gun, luckily. The building people were afraid he might have gotten himself shot by having a toy gun or something, but he wasn't that nutty. He's being charged with inducing panic. Hopefully he will get some help.


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