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Westlake District standoff: Armed woman taken into custody

July 26, 2013 12:00:00 AM PDT
What started out as a home burglary escalated into a SWAT standoff, when an armed woman refused to come out of an apartment building in the Westlake District.

The woman was taken into custody at around 5:30 a.m. after what sounded like flash-bang grenades were deployed at the scene. Investigators say she was shot in the leg by officers. She was reported to be in stable condition and is expected to be OK.

Authorities say it all started when a man reported a break-in at his apartment. He told officials that he was woken up at about 10:45 p.m. Thursday by a woman at the foot of his bed. He fled his home, while she remained inside.

Investigators say the woman found a gun on a nightstand inside the apartment. When police arrived on scene, she told them she was armed. At that point, officers backed off, secured the location and started communicating with her.

When the suspect refused to surrender, the SWAT team was called in. While SWAT officers were en route, police on scene said one shot was fired inside the apartment. Investigators say they do not believe she fired at officers.

At about 5:30 a.m., the standoff came to an end. The suspect was seen taken out of the building on a stretcher with handcuffs.

All 40-plus units in the apartment building were forced to evacuate during the standoff - many with young children. Some watched the chaos unfold from the sidewalk. To accommodate all the evacuees, LAPD called in city buses. Many residents ended up spending the night in the buses.

A tenant, who did not want to be identified, said he had a run-in with the suspect. He said the suspect walked into his apartment at about 10:30 p.m. Thursday. When he asked, "Can we help you?" the suspect answered, "No" and closed the door.

The tenant said he watched the suspect try to open several other doors on his floor.

The relationship between the suspect and the victim remains unclear, but the victim said he does not know her.

James M Wood Boulevard was closed between Alvarado Street and Union Avenue for the investigation.


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