By Beth David, Editor
The Acushnet Police Department notified the public on social media at about 9:30 a.m. on Monday, 6/7, that a standoff situation was in progress on Oliveira Avenue. A subject had barricaded himself inside the house by himself, no hostages.
At about 1:20 p.m., the department posted on its Facebook page that the situation had been resolved peacefully.
In a press availability after the incident, Acushnet Police Chief Christopher Richmond said that the department received at least two 911 calls at 5:45 a.m. He said it was a domestic argument and that the department received calls from “both sides of the argument.”
According to the chief, one party was outside when police arrived. The other person approached officers, but then went back into the house.
Chief Richmond said the man who retreated back into the house was making threats.
The police “secured the perimeter and called in the necessary assets to assist us,” he said.
They received mutual aid from Fairhaven and Rochester, and also the state police.
He noted that years ago, the police may have entered the house sooner, but police departments have learned that “time is our ally.”
He said they took time to talk to the subject involved and give him the time he needed to come out voluntarily.
Elements of the SWAT team were on standby because they are trained more in less lethal munitions, and they work with a negotiation team.
Word got around that the man had a knife. Chief Richmond said he was holding a knife at one point. He never actually threatened anyone with it, said the chief, but he was “holding it in a menacing manner,” but eventually put it down.
Chief Richmond said the department was still interviewing the other party involved and had not determined if charges would be brought, or what they would be.
“The main thing is we want to make sure this gentleman gets the help he needs and we’ll go from there,” said Chief Richmond, noting that “he ultimately came out on his own.”
Although these kinds of incidents do not happen often in Acushnet, the chief noted that mental health issues have been on the rise in the past year due to the pandemic.
“Unfortunately, they’re becoming more and more common,” he said.
He would not answer if the person was “known to” police, saying he was not comfortable answering the question at that time.
He did confirm that both people are residents of the house.
The man did not make any “demands” as such, said the chief, but they did provide him with iced coffee and other things to keep the relationship going.
The party involved was transported for evaluation, said Chief Richmond, but would not release his name.
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