Police were called to the Glenn Acres Mobile Home Park around five Monday morning. Two people claimed they escaped from a gunman who was still inside a residence holding two others at gunpoint.
"The SWAT team was called out, mobilized, and a perimeter was set up fairly quickly. At that time, negotiations were attempted but were very unsuccessful," says Sgt. Shawn Fitzgerald with the Texarkana, Texas Police Department. SWAT worked for nearly three hours before the others were released, but still the gunman wouldn't cooperate with authorities trying to resolve matters peacefully. After four hours authorities moved in on the suspect. "The decision was made to deploy tear gas inside the house. They did that in two locations, again no contact with the suspect whatsoever, no response from the communications and then they made a dynamic entry and were able to get the suspect and arrest him without incident," Fitzgerald says.
During the hold-up, residents were asked to stay inside their homes. Some children had to wait for an all clear before heading to school. Some returning to the park weren't allowed in. One resident says, "The SWAT team guy was over there behind the house, and he told us to stay in til they could get everything under control." Those who live in the neighborhood commended officers for keeping everyone safe. They're glad to see things back to normal. "We pretty much keep to ourselves. We don't know many people around here. It is relatively quiet, and we enjoy living here," says one family. Sgt. Fitzgerald says he's glad the situation ended like it did. "Anytime you can do that with no injuries or loss of life, it is a success, They did exactly what they set out to do." The suspect is 34-year-old John Fitzgerald Kennedy. Police say Kennedy was staying at the residence with the people he is accused of taking hostage. No word yet on the motive.