Berkeley Standoff Ends Peacefully


A standoff in the Berkeley Hills that began around 2:30 p.m. Sunday afternoon and involved numerous SWAT officers ended peacefully around 11:30 p.m., according to police departing the scene. The standoff centered on a male occupant of a house who was described in earlier reports as depressed and armed.

A Berkeley police officer returning to his car after hours of vigilance told neighbors that his team had used a "flash-bang" device (a small explosive intended to stun but not harm) to distract the man and that he was being taken into custody.

As the Contra Costa Times reported earlier today, while the standoff was still happening: "A depressed Vietnam veteran held police at bay in a home in the Berkeley hills on Sunday night. ... Police cordoned off the area around the house in the 1200 block of Queens Road and evacuated neighbors as they tried to negotiate with the armed man to give himself up. No shots were fired. ... Officers were called by the man's girlfriend who owns the house. She told police the suspect had threatened her but she was able to escape," the Times quoted Berkeley Police Sergeant Mary Kusmiss as saying.—Anneli Rufus