Bean bag shots subdue suspect
Rifle Citizen Telegram
A police standoff in the 200 block of Clarkson Avenue came to a satisfying conclusion when the suspect was subdued and apprehended after a six-hour situation.
The lengthy standoff between Tobie A. Patterson, 24, and police ended abruptly when he exited the home and was shot with two rounds from a 12-gauge shotgun by a Mesa County SWAT team member at approximately 8:10 a.m. The “bean bag” rounds struck Patterson in the thigh and side, allowing law enforcement officers to apprehend him in the backyard of the residence. He was taken to Clagett Memorial Hospital in Rifle for examination, then transported to the Garfield County Jail where he will be held pending formal filing of charges.
Rifle Police Chief Daryl Meisner said that Patterson was in possession of several weapons, including two rifles, one shotgun and a hunting bow. Meisner also said that Patterson fired two arrows from the hunting bow while in the house. With three officers in the home and Patterson in the basement, at least 10 gunshots were fired from downstairs at approximately 2:21 a.m. Meisner said they haven’t concluded if the gunshots or arrows were fired directly at the officers.
The officers immediately vacated the home and secured the perimeter. All homes in the immediate vicinity were evacuated, with evacuees taken to City Hall. The evacuation shelter was later moved to the Senior Center. At least 12 families were evacuated.
The house belongs to Patterson’s parents but he also resides at the same address. The parents were evacuated after the shots were fired.
Police surrounded and illuminated the house, and tried to negotiate with Patterson throughout the night.
Meisner said Patterson didn’t have a weapon when he exited the home, but was looking for an escape route. Police quickly determined that they had no choice but to shoot him in an attempt to subdue him when they had the opportunity. “We definitely weren’t going to allow him to go back into the house where there were weapons,” Meisner said.
The incident began at 1:48 a.m. when Patterson allegedly broke into an unidentified woman’s home. Police reported that he then escaped through a window when they arrived. The female at the house reportedly knew Patterson.
Police located Patterson at his parent’s home on Clarkson a few minutes later.
Meisner said the conclusion to the standoff was extremely satisfying. “I’m very grateful that it ended the way it did – for him, his family and all the officers,” a visibly tired Meisner said Tuesday afternoon.
Evacuees were allowed to return to their homes around 8:30 a.m.
A total of 30 law enforcement personnel from Rifle, Garfield and Mesa county sheriff’s departments, and the Mesa County SWAT team helped with the standoff. Two negotiators from Mesa County were also called in.
Dale Shrull is the editor for the Rifle Citizen Telegram.
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