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Tense Situation in Germantown Neighborhood Ends Peacefully

Neighbors leaving for work and dropping children at school stepped out their doors to see a large police presence and a tense situation as police, some carrying rifles, communicated with an adult man who was seen acting suspiciously and had locked himself inside of his townhouse.

Montgomery County Police were called to the Seneca Forest neighborhood of Germantown this morning for reports of an adult man acting suspiciously before 8:00 am on Wednesday, Sept. 21, according to Lt. Jim Brown of the 5th District – Germantown. “When officers approached the man it was clear that he was either having a mental health issue or on some sort of drugs,” said Lt. Brown.

The unidentified man refused to cooperate with police and was pepper sprayed, according to Brown. After he was sprayed, he ran from police and into his townhouse on Cherry Bend Terrace. The man was known to police, as they had been called to his address for previous mental health incidents and was known to have access to a weapon, according to Brown. However, the subject never displayed a weapon during this incident, said Brown.

Out of an abundance of caution, police surrounded the residence and took up positions to create a perimeter around the subject’s house, while communicating with the man in an attempt to get him to surrender. Officers could be seen taking cover behind trees and squad cars with their weapons, including rifles ready. Montgomery County Fire Rescue units were staged along Great Seneca Highway as police communicated with the man.

About two hours later, shortly before 10:00 am the man gave himself up and was taken into custody without incident, and the police on the perimeter were able to stand down. He was taken to a local hospital by Fire Rescue for a mental health evaluation, and will not face any charges relating to this incident, according to Lt. Brown.

“We face these sort of incidents with mentally ill individuals every day,” said Brown. “Most are not as tense and do not require the amount of police presence we had here, and 98 percent of them end peacefully with the subjects getting the mental and medical help they require.”


Top: Montgomery County Police officers, one with a rifle, crouch behind a tree, while another officer with gun drawn takes a position on a lawn along Dawson Farm Road as other offices communicate with the mentally unstable subject.

Next: A police officer takes up a position in the rear of the townhouse.

Next: Neighbors on their way to work found a large police presence waiting for them in the neighborhood Wednesday morning.

Next: Officers near the front of the house attempted to communicate with the subject.