Suspected Gunman Surrenders After 35-Hour Standoff

on May12

11 May 2017 | 10:35 pm

A tense police standoff in New Jersey’s capital city ended peacefully just after 5 p.m. Thursday.

After nearly 35 hours, 35-year-old Tyleeb Reese walked out of the Trenton home where he had been holed up since Wednesday morning with his hands up and surrendered to police.

The standoff lasted nearly 35 hours as authorities negotiated with the suspected gunman who opened fire on U.S. Marshals serving a warrant, killing a bystander and injuring three officers.

Throughout the day Thursday, officers on a bullhorn could be heard pleading with 35-year-old Tyleeb Reese to leave the Trenton home.

A hostage negotiator used a bullhorn to try to compromise with Reese, promising that if he came out “with your hands up in the air…I give you my word that you will walk away from here.”

The incident began around 6:20 a.m. Wednesday when the U.S. Marshals Service Joint Regional Fugitive Task Force attempted to serve a warrant at a home on Centre Street, Trenton Police Lt. Stephen Varn said. Police say Reese allegedly fired at the marshals from inside the home and they retreated. Several law enforcement agencies responded to the scene and surrounded the house.

A bystander, 56-year-old Robert Powell Jr., of Lamberton Street in Trenton, was shot and killed outside the home. 

Cellphone video obtained by NBC10 shows several armed officers braced against parked cars with their guns pointed at a nearby building. A bystander is then seen crawling on the ground to safety when several shots are fired. At least one bullet appears to have struck the man. Footage shows two officers drag the man’s body to safety and then another gun shot is heard before the video ends.

Police have not confirmed if the bystander who was killed is the man in the cellphone video. 

Three Mercer County Sheriff’s officers were injured, police said. Officials said they were struck by projectiles and were taken to the hospital where they were all treated and released. 

Families in the area were evacuated from their homes while others received a reverse 911 call urging them to remain inside. Police say a 7-year-old boy was alone in a home across from the barricaded house. Officers were able to get him out safely and reunited with his mother. 

One resident told NBC10 she is a close friend of Reese, a father of two.

“We talked to him a few times on the phone,” Tamara Reaves said. “I asked him just to come out.”

Reaves said the suspect is well-known and liked in the community.

“It’s almost a suicide attempt to me, and I love him very much,” she said. “He wants somebody to take him out. He doesn’t have the courage to kill himself. We want it to end in a good way, not the cops getting hurt or him getting hurt.”

Published at 11:22 AM CDT on May 11, 2017 | Updated at 10:43 PM CDT on May 11, 2017

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