Police respond to barricaded hostage situation

From Google Maps

Jenna Kuczkowski

Kent City Police and the Metro SWAT team are negotiating with a male suspect who has barricaded himself in a laundry room in building five of the Villages at Franklin Crossing and has taken a female hostage.

According to Lt. Mike Lewis, officers initially arrived at the complex to investigate some suspicious persons, who were reportedly involved in drug activity at 12:30 p.m. 

“When we tried to make contact with (the suspect) in the living room, that’s when he barricaded himself,” Lewis said. “The male suspect then advised that he had taken a female hostage. At that point we evacuated the building and we activated our regional-metro SWAT team.” 

Lewis said SWAT has negotiated with the suspect since their arrival on scene.

“We are doing everything we can to bring this to a peaceful resolution,” Lewis said. 

Lewis said police believe the male suspect is armed but declined to disclose what type of weapon.

Police do not know why the suspect barricaded himself and will not say if he has prior charges or release his name.

Neighbors and community members have gathered outside the complex and dozens said they’ve been watching since the police arrived. 

“I’ve been out here just watching since it started,” said Brent Chaney, a resident of building four. “This is a first for me. Being this close to something like this — in real life with the SWAT team and all that stuff — is something I’ve never seen before.”

Jenna Kuczkowski is a general assignment editor, contact her at [email protected]