The Kern County Sheriff?s SWAT team rushed to the scene of a stand-off in Lebec where a single gunshot was fired Friday afternoon, Jan. 11 at a home on Louise Way in O?Neil Canyon.
By Gary Meyer
A gunshot in Lebec prompted a SWAT (Special Weapons and Tactics) team to swarm a tiny neighborhood in O’Neil Canyon, Friday, Jan. 11.
The Kern County Sheriff’s Department responded to a domestic dispute call at 2:47 p.m. While en route to the scene, deputies were advised that a male suspect had fired a shot inside the home in the 900 block of Louise Way in Lebec and that the man was still inside the home with a handgun. He was identified as Thomas Nuñez, 76 of Lebec.
According to Sheriff’s Lieutenant Steve Hansen, who spoke with The Mountain Enterprise at the scene, deputies escorted Nuñez’ wife to safety. Asked whether she had seen her husband after hearing the gunshot, Hansen said, "She said she went to the room where the shot was fired and she saw him there and he was OK. Then she left the house."
Sheriff’s deputies and California Highway Patrol officers set a perimeter and began evacuating residents in the area. For two hours, Sheriff’s vehicles poured into the neighborhood. SWAT team members suited up with gear and weapons stored in their separate vehicles.
Nuñez’ neighbor Sandy Kelly was upset at seeing so much weaponry coming into the neighborhood. "This is so sad," she said as she stood watching at the corner of Lebec Oaks Road and Louise Way, "He is a very nice man."
Shortly after 5 p.m. a crisis negotiator began communicating with Nuñez through a megaphone. At 5:32 p.m.
Nuñez exited his home and was taken into custody by SWAT team members.
Several firearms were seized and Nuñez was transported to Bakersfield where he was booked into the Central Receiving Facility for Criminal Death Threats; Assault with a deadly weapon; Discharging a firearm that endangers persons and Brandishing a weapon in a rude or threatening manner.
The Mountain Enterprise provided reporting of the event for Bakersfield KERO TV, channel 23 from the scene, with the assistance of Jim Stoughton, Lt. Col. USMC, ret.
This is part of the January 18, 2008 online edition of The Mountain Enterprise.
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