Watch: Chicago firefighters escape after armed man locks them inside home
A Chicago battalion chief and lieutenant were locked inside a house by a knife-wielding man during a fire
By Deanese Williams-Harris
CHICAGO — Two Chicago firefighters escaped a man armed with a knife who had locked them inside an Auburn Gresham home covered with suspected gasoline Tuesday, Chicago police said.
The firefighters responded to the residence in the 7700 block of South Marshfield Avenue for a call of a garage fire shortly after 12:15 p.m. When the firefighters arrived, they met with a man, described as between 52- and 54-years-old, who said he wanted them to check the basement for a gas leak, a police report said.
When they went downstairs, the man pointed a knife at the firefighters and told them they could not leave. When they tried to flee, they encountered reinforced lock doors as the man chased them with the knife, according to the report.
More firefighters arrived at the scene, but the man said he would only speak to the FBI. Soon after, responding firefighters gained entry to the residence through a rear window after attempts to come through a front door were unsuccessful, the report said.
The trapped firefighters eventually reached the main floor of the residence and were able to escape. Chicago police found the armed man barricaded in a bathroom where he made statements that he wanted to harm himself. Police were able to breach the door and take the man into custody.
Police said they found an empty holster on the man, a multicolored knife on the floor of the bathroom and a yellow knife in his pocket. Police found a loaded handgun in the stairwell, according to the report. While clearing the scene, officers found gasoline covering the floors of the residence.
After a suspected pipe bomb was found, officers summoned the bomb and arson squad but the pipe bomb was determined not to be a threat.
The man was taken to a hospital for evaluation, the report said, and no injuries were reported during the incident.
The man was arrested and charges are pending.
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