An intense situation in Belmont, N.C. went from heated to weird on July 8, when Hampton Inn guest Fredrick Denney, 61, of Roseburg, Ore., caused a disturbance that led to a call to police. When they arrived an armed Denney reportedly barricaded himself in his room and threatened to shoot at police. The confrontation quickly became a multi-agency affair, and of course, SWAT was called in to diffuse the situation. Negotiators closed off the entire second floor of the hotel and began trying to reason with Denney. At some point over the next few hours, perhaps after Denney demanded pizza and to marry Paris Hilton, SWAT decided to rush in and pepper spray Denney, ending the standoff. He was taken into custody for a metal evaluation, and charged with drunk and disorderly, among other things. Bail was set at $90,000.
In another recent standoff, this one in Omaha, Neb., police tried to pull over Lance A. Wetzel, 36, who was wanted for prohibited possession of a firearm, but the armed, distraught man, who had had a confrontation with his estranged wife that morning, wound up barricading himself in the car in a standoff with police. According to Chief Deputy Marty Bilek of the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office, the standoff ended 3½ hours later, when Wetzel stepped out of his light-colored convertible, and started to urinate. Police took the opportunity to Taser him, but it was not enough to subdue him. Wetzel recovered quickly enough from the shock to pick up his shotgun, and aim it at police. It was then that a deputy dropped him with a single rifle shot, while Wetzel’s gun discharged harmlessly into the air. He was later reported in stable, but critical condition having suffered gunshot wounds to the arm and abdomen.