The Austin, Tx., Police Department’s SWAT and Critical Incident Negotiation teams resolved four difficult calls in the past six days without using deadly force. The Austin American-Statesman says that Police Chief Stan Knee called a news conference to congratulate team members. On Saturday, the teams responded to a possible hostage negotiation; the incident was resolved peacefully. On Sunday, they responded to a call that a person who was suicidal was barricaded; The person surrendered. On Monday, an armed man barricaded himself and threatened to shoot an officer; The man surrendered after five hours of negotiation. On Wednesday, an armed man, who police say threatened his relatives, barricaded himself in an apartment; The man, armed with a .44-caliber Magnum, fired five or six rounds at police before surrendering. Officers fired beanbag rounds and used a Taser stun gun to subdue him.
Citing one case, chief Knee said that, “the SWAT team, using great self-control, fired not a shot. This could have been a very hazardous situation, had they not had that discipline.” The SWAT team, with help from the negotiations team, has responded to 420 high-risk incidents in the Austin area since 1998 including barricaded or hostage situations and high-risk search warrants.