California’s Commerce Casino Evacuated After Distraught Man Brandishes Knife — Video
Posted on: January 31, 2023, 01:24h.
Last updated on: January 31, 2023, 02:52h.
A knife-wielding suspect was apprehended after confronting a security guard at California’s Commerce Casino and Hotel on Tuesday morning. The lower level of the popular cardroom was evacuated as a precaution, NBC News reported.
The confrontation began at about 5:45 a.m. Initially, the distraught man got into a dispute with a security guard inside the gaming venue. At one point, he threatened to stab guests and staff in a poker room, an eyewitness revealed to Fox News.
As the standoff continued, Los Angeles County deputies tried to apprehend the suspect with a beanbag round apparently fired from a shotgun. Instead of surrendering, he barricaded himself in the cardroom, KTLA, a local TV station, reported.
Eventually, Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department deputies apprehended the unnamed suspect. The suspect was placed in an ambulance and rushed to a local hospital about two hours later, according to KCAL, another California station. He was to get a physical and emotional evaluation at the hospital, KTLA said.
It’s unclear if the suspect was injured. None of the responding deputies suffered injuries, KABC, another local TV station, reported.
The account couldn’t be immediately verified by Casino.org.
Negotiator Called to Scene
During the incident, it appears the suspect was emotionally upset, Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department Captain Pilar Chavez told local media. The suspect told witnesses that he wanted his life to end, reports said.
A specially trained negotiator was sent to the cardroom. The negotiator began speaking with the suspect in an effort to get him to surrender. Professionals who conducted a mental health evaluation on the man were also sent to the scene.
The suspect had a six-inch knife in his possession. He eventually dropped it, and deputies seized it as evidence, according to initial news reports.
It was also reported that some 100 people, including guests and workers, were in the cardroom at the time of the standoff. A police dog was sent to the gaming venue, but it wasn’t used to apprehend the man.
TV reporters saw a dozen or more police and fire vehicles in the property’s parking lot.
About Commerce Casino
The cardroom is located in Commerce, Calif, close to the 5 Freeway. Commerce is about 10 miles southeast of Los Angeles.
Commerce Casino doesn’t have slot machines on its gaming floor. It’s a cardroom with poker, blackjack, baccarat, and Pai Gow Poker, as well as other games.
It is one of about 72 cardrooms in the state.
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