Police arrest man barricaded in bathroom

Published 11:03 pm Thursday, March 19, 2009

A man whom police were attempting to detain for an emergency committal order barricaded himself in a bathroom in his house Wednesday morning and had to be removed by a special forces team.

Alvis Reid, 44, of the 200 block of Wellons Street, was taken from his bathroom by members of the Suffolk Police Department’s Critical Incident Response Team just before 5 a.m. Wednesday morning. He was taken to Sentara Obici Hospital for assessment.

A family member had called the magistrate’s office several hours earlier, saying that Reid was off his medication, threatening them and becoming violent, said city spokeswoman Debbie George.

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Officers responded to Reid’s house and attempted to place him under arrest for an emergency committal order, which allows police to take the subject for a mental evaluation. However, Reid lunged at officers with a knife, and also threw a portable stove at them, George said.

Officers used a Taser on Reid, but the device had little effect, George said. At that point, officers backed out of the house and evacuated the residence, as well as houses on either side. A negotiator and the Critical Incident Response Team came to the scene. The negotiator tried to establish contact, but the man was incoherent, George said.

The team then began using an assortment of noxious gases, including pepper spray and tear gas, to try to force the man out of his house. However, the man did not emerge from the house.

Police then made the decision that the Critical Incident Response Team would have to go in to get him. After searching the gas-filled house, police found the man in a ground-floor bathroom, splashing water on his face and skin to diminish the effects of the gases.

Police arrested the man and charged him with attempted malicious wounding, in addition to the emergency committal order, because he lunged at officers with a knife. He suffered minor injuries during the ordeal, George said.