DETROIT (WWJ) — I-94 on Detroit’s east side was closed for nearly four hours on Saturday morning as police dealt with an armed man who threatened to commit suicide in the area.
The situation unfolded at around 9 a.m. on Harper Ave. — near westbound I-94 and Outer Dr.
Detroit Police Chief James Craig said officers received calls about an armed man threatening to kill himself.
“The officers backed off properly, contacted our special response team who ultimately responded,” Craig said. “Once they arrived, they took over what we call the inner perimeter around the subject.”
Craig said the man had one request: To have his children brought to him.
“So long as he was armed we couldn’t do that,” Craig said. “His children were at the scene, but not at the location where he was — at some distance, a safe distance away.”
After a very tense standoff, police were able to take the man into custody without further incident.
“There were periodic times where he went right up to our tactical vehicle,” Craig said. “He was armed, he had the gun to his head. Again, our officers show extreme patience and professionalism. Again, this could have been a situation that could have resulted in deadly force given that the subject was armed.
“They were patient and at the appropriate time deployed what we call a distraction device and once that happened, we were able to take him into custody safely,” Craig said.
The man was allowed to meet with his children and his brothers who were at the scene. The man will undergo a mental evaluation before facing criminal charges.
There were no reported injuries. Westbound I-94 at Outer Dr. and eastbound I-94 at French Rd. were both closed from 9 a.m. until about 1 p.m.
Nearby Chandler Park Golf Course was evacuated due to the situation.
The man’s name was not released.