Suspect escapes after police standoff in Bay Park - San Diego, California News Station - KFMB Channel 8 - cbs8.com

Suspect escapes after police standoff in Bay Park

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SAN DIEGO (CNS) - An apparently suicidal man turned on a natural-gas source at a Bay Park home Tuesday, sending flammable fumes wafting through and outside the structure and prompting authorities to evacuate nearby residences as a precaution.

San Diego police got an emergency call about 11:30 a.m. from someone reporting the man's threats to kill himself at a house in the 1400 block of Galveston Street, SDPD public-affairs Officer Matt Tortorella said.

Arriving patrol personnel detected a strong presence of natural gas in the air around the home and began clearing people out of surrounding residences. Fire department personnel, meanwhile, cut off the supply of gas and electricity to the house where the man was believed to be hunkering down.

A crisis counselor contacted the man by telephone and tried in vain to get him to surrender. Eventually, he hung up and stopped answering the line.

As the stalemate wore on, a SWAT team deployed around the residence and sent in a camera-equipped robotic device to look for the suicidal man, finding no one.

In the late afternoon, the special weapons and tactics personnel entered the home, finding it unoccupied, Officer Mark Herring said. It was unclear where the man might have gone.

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