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LA suspect held after 5-hour standoff on roof

SWAT team used bean-bag rounds after man could not be persuaded to come down

Associated Press

LOS ANGELES — A suspect in an auto theft was arrested Thursday after a bizarre five-hour standoff on the rooftops of a Westwood neighborhood.

Police SWAT members finally climbed the roof of a home and peppered the man with bean-bag ammunition.

That persuaded him to scramble over to a truck-mounted ramp, and he was lowered to the ground and handcuffed, Officer Karen Rayner said. The suspect's name was not immediately released.

No one was seriously injured during the confrontation, which began around 8 a.m. when police began following a reportedly stolen Toyota Camry.

After a short chase, the driver stopped, ran and climbed onto a roof a block east of the University of California, Los Angeles, police said.

The standoff was broadcast live throughout the morning from a KTTV-TV news helicopter that showed the man hopping from rooftop to rooftop of several homes as police flooded the neighborhood.

No homes were evacuated. Police surrounded the home, and crisis negotiators made unsuccessful efforts to get the man to come down.

The suspect attempted to climb down a tree several times but returned to second-floor rooftops when he spotted officers nearby.

At one point, officers used ladders to get onto the roof and got within 20 feet of the suspect, urging him to surrender.

But he jumped to the rooftop of another home. When officers placed a ladder in front of the suspect at one point, he ran away and leaned against a fireplace to smoke what appeared to be a cigarette.

Moments later, the agitated man raised his arms and appeared to be taunting officers as he paced back and forth on rooftops, jumping from house to house.

Copyright 2012 Associated Press

Copyright Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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