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How did standoff suspect fend off arrest?

August 14, 2009 12:00:00 AM PDT
An eight-hour standoff with a man barricaded in his car finally ended Thursday after police fired multiple rounds of tear gas and Tasered him in Westwood. About seven hours into Thursday's standoff, FBI and LAPD SWAT teams fired tear gas four times into 56-year-old Joseph Moshe's car.

"I was absolutely flabbergasted that he was able to stay in that car that long," said Jack Jack Trimarco, a retired FBI SWAT negotiator and current polygraph expert.

Trimarco says what the city saw unfold during the standoff at the Federal Building was textbook.

"The law enforcement agencies knew that this man was not the typical high-speed chase, stopping ... barricading himself," said Trimarco. "He must have said something about a bomb. He must have had some history that they knew about, that they knew this was not just going to be a person with a firearm, but he could've been a ticking bomb -- coupled with the fact that he's got a history of some mental instability."

Some are also wondering how Moshe withstood the multiple rounds of tear gas.

"Anybody who is exposed to tear gas in such a confined space for an extended period of time -- over 30 to 60 minutes -- could actually even have permanent damage afterwards," said Dr. Joseph Shapiro, a breathing specialist who experienced tear gas when working in a bank. "And the fact that this person was able to stay in a car for so long, without getting any fresh air, is really unknown."

Experts say the lengthy stand-off was a good thing.

"History tells us that the longer a hostage situation, or a barricade subject situation goes, the more likely it's going to end peacefully ... without loss of life," said Trimarco.

Moshe was admitted to the hospital after the standoff for treatment and remains in custody.

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