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Red Cross Called To Aid Evacuees
MT. HELIX -- As the armed standoff on Mt. Helix entered its 10th hour, police began making arrangements with the local Red Cross to provide shelter for nearby residents displaced by the armed events.
As night fell, SWAT teams remained surrounding a home on Grandview Avenue, a street that runs along the south face of the foothills around Mt. Helix in unincorporated La Mesa. As night fell there reports that tear gas had been fired into the home, but Sheriff's public information officers were not commenting publicly.
At 11:30 a.m. Monday, helicopters were engaged overhead as police were cordoning off the area.
San Diego County Sheriff's Deputies said there was a man with a gun, inside a home, firing multiple shots and SWAT team members have moved in to isolate the home. Deputies did not identity for the shooter at this point.
At 2:15 p.m., Sheriff's Deputies released more details on the event, saying an argument between a woman and her fiancée brought deputies to the house this morning just after 10 a.m.
Within minutes deputies from the Lemon Grove Sheriff’s Station, Special Enforcement Detail (SED/SWAT), and a Crisis Negotiation Team were involved in a standoff in this unincorporated part of La Mesa.
A fiancé of the 47-year-old man holed up inside the house told deputies they had had an argument and the man threatened to hurt her and himself. The man had been drinking. When deputies arrived on scene and tried to contact the suspect, the man threatened to kill the deputies. A few seconds later, shots were fired inside the house. Deputies immediately backed out of the house. Three other people inside the house got out safely. Deputies did not fire a shot.
Homes immediately surrounding the suspect’s house have been evacuated. Following the shooting, the Sheriff’s Communication Center notified homes within a one-mile radius of the suspect’s house to inform them to stay inside. Residents were told to close windows and close curtains and blinds. Police said the suspect has a long rifle and is shooting in all directions. Deputies are unable to go door to door right now for an evacuation because they will be exposed to gunfire.
Both directions of Grandview Drive are closed. Police advised avoiding the area if you can. The department's helicopter is overhead to help deputies on the ground.
The California HIghway Patrol is also assisting with this incident.
No one has been hurt so far. Sheriff's deputies are urging the suspect to give himself up so the situation can end peacefully.
Not long after the event began, deputies were advising residents in the area to stay in their home and to await evacuation orders from police authorities. The sheriff's helicopter was overhead throughout the day and into the night. Just after noon today, Sheriff's dispatchers began making reverse 9-1-1 calls to Mt. Helix residents advising them to stay inside and await further instructions.
At 2:38 p.m. sheriff's dispatchers again made reverse 9-1-1 calls to areas around the standoff, advising all residents to stay inside. Deputies said they would make another call when the situation is resolved.
By 2:30 p.m., police were still manning roadblocks at all entry points to the section of Grandview and had set up a command station at Murdock Elementary School on Conrad.
Authorities were giving out little information but Highway Patrol officers said negotiators were on the way to the scene. They were still not identifying the gunman, but said he was a 47-year old male who was related to the owners of the home where the shooting was occurring.
At 7:30 p.m. word at the command post was that the gunman was alone in the home and the standoff was continuing.
Local residents who were away from their homes and wanted to return were being turned back at Resmar and Grandview (see photo above) and also from the western end of Grandview. Murdock Elementary, where the police command station has been set up, is located south of Grandview.
According to early TV reports, La Mesa police units as well as sheriff's deputies and California Highway Patrol responded to the area, but the area is in unincorporated Mt. Helix and the incident is now completely in control of the Sheriff's Department.