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In Santa Clarita, California, Standoff Between Authorities and Armed Man

Aired August 31, 2001 - 14:35   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
DARYN KAGAN, CNN ANCHOR: And right now, if you're just joining us, we're going to go back to Santa Clarita, California, and the standoff between authorities and an armed man.

Once again, our correspondent there Hena Cuevas is there to bring us the latest -- Hena.

HENA CUEVAS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes, about three hours ago, ATF agents went to the suspect's home to serve a search warrant. At this point, we don't know what the warrant was for, but that's when the shootout began. And we understand that one of the deputy sheriffs has been shot and taken to a local hospital.

About an hour ago, a sheriff's department helicopter landed here at the command center. L.A. County sheriff Lee Baca was onboard, and as you can see, they unloaded a large amount of weapons and additional troops. At this point, we don't know where the weapons were going to and what they were for. We do know that sheriff Baca is on his way to the hospital, where he will be holding a press conference to update us on the operation and on the condition of that deputy.

Just a couple of minutes ago, we saw an armored vehicle, a type of tank that is usually used in SWAT operations, which was headed over into the area. So it seems like they're really pulling out the big guns in hoping to end the standoff anytime soon.

KAGAN: And are you able to tell us if there is any other people in there? Have you heard any other details, or when they might update us on more information?

CUEVAS: We're waiting for the press conference from the sheriff to get some additional information. What we know is that apparently the suspect is alone at home, the sheriff's department has evacuated the area for the safety of the neighbors. We did speak to some of the people who have been blocked from being able to get to their homes. We spoke to one neighbor who says he lives across the street from the suspect. He described him as a very nice neighbor, 36 years old. The man had moved into the neighborhood about a year ago, and he said he was a marshal.

The neighbors also say that about a few days ago, investigators had been in the neighborhood, had gone to their homes, and had started asking questions about this person, so they knew there was something suspicious going on, but said they never imagined it would come to this.

KAGAN: Hena Cuevas, thanks very much -- Natalie.

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