On Sunday, the Pittsburg Police Department responded to a reported domestic violence incident where a male went into a home and held three children inside.
The incident began 6:30 pm at an address on Bending Willow Way in the City of Pittsburg and ended nearly 7-hours later.
Lt. William Hatcher stated as officers responded to the incident, a juvenile called police saying the male suspect was holding a 9-year-old hostage with a knife and that juvenile and a 3-year-old were able to exit the residence. As officers arrived on scene, they established a perimeter and after 15-minutes, that juvenile was able to leave the home.
According to Captain Steve Albanese , when officers arrived at the house, the female victim told officers her estranged boyfriend snuck into her house this afternoon and physically assaulted her. The woman was able to get out of the house, but her 3 children remained inside.
He further highlighted while officers were on scene, two of the children were able to get out of the house. A short while later, the third child was allowed to leave by the man and all children are safely with officers and their mother. The man remains inside the house, has refused to come outside, and has barricaded himself in the home.
The Pittsburg Police Department tactical team and crisis negotiators arrived on scene and tried to negotiate with the man for several hours for a peaceful surrender but ultimately SWAT was needed to take the suspect safely into custody.
According to Hatcher, they exhausted all methods for a peaceful surrender and once they knew the home was clear of anybody else and it was a solo barricaded, they tried to reach out to him through family members, crisis intervention team to establish contact.
Hatcher confirmed both the suspects father and mother made contact with him to encourage a peaceful surrender but admitted the most challenging part was trying to make contact with the suspect and never could make contact with him through friends, family, trained negotiators but could not get a verbal dialogue.
Officers ultimately took the suspect into custody in the garage area after the suspect attempted to flee into the backyard.
Police said the female involved in the domestic was taken to the hospital for treatment of her injuries in the domestic, however, no injuries were reported to the children.
No suspect information was released.
UPDATE per Pittsburg Police
Early Sunday evening, Pittsburg Police Officers responded to a house in the 1000 block of Bending Willow Way for a reported domestic violence incident. As officers were responding to the scene, one of the children inside the home called 911 saying a man was holding a 9-year-old hostage with a knife. When officers arrived at the house, an adult victim told officers her estranged boyfriend snuck into her house earlier in the afternoon and physically assaulted her. The woman was able to get out of the house prior to police arrival. Shortly after she exited the home, two of her children (ages 13 and 3) were also able to escape. But, the woman’s 9-year-old was still inside the house with the man. The victim identified him as Frederick Douglas (36-years-old), and stated he was on parole for domestic violence and made statements that he would not be going back to prison.
Officers began calling into the residence, attempting to make contact with Douglas. After approximately ten minutes, Douglas allowed the 9-year-old to exit the residence, but he refused to exit himself.
The Pittsburg Police Department has several officers that are trained in Crisis Negotiation. For hours, those highly trained officers worked to make contact with Douglas but he refused to speak with them. Efforts to reach Douglas’ family members were successful. But, despite urging from both his mother and father, Douglas would not exit the house and made statements of suicide by shooting at the police.
The Pittsburg Police Department Tactical Team was activated and Detectives authored an arrest and search warrant for Douglas and the residence. Crisis Negotiators and Crisis Intervention trained officers continued for hours to make contact and convince him to exit the home. After those efforts failed, chemical agents were deployed and Douglas exited the home bringing an end to the 7 hour standoff. He attempted to flee through the backyard but was taken into custody without further incident.
After the arrest, Douglas was transported to a hospital and, once medically cleared, was then transported to the Martinez Detention Facility where he is being held on a Ramey Warrant for felony Kidnaping, False Imprisonment, Domestic Violence and Robbery. This case will be reviewed by the District Attorney later this week.
The woman was transported to the hospital for minor injuries and later released. All three children were released to family members. The children were uninjured. Detectives will be working with the family to make sure they receive domestic violence victim support and resources to assist them through this emotional ordeal.
The department would like to thank all of the family and friends who worked with officers and bring this situation to a peaceful resolution.