Sirens & Gavels

Armed man surrenders to pepper spray

A domestic violence suspect arrested after a standoff in north Spokane on Saturday made statements about "shooting it out with police" and "suicide by cop," police said today.

James Michael Vandyke, 41, is to appear in Spokane County Superior Court this afternoon on a second-degree assault charge after police used pepper spray to force him from a home in the 5500 block of North Greenwood Boulevard on Saturday.

Officers arrived to find Vandyke forcibly holding his wife while clutching a gun. He refused to drop the gun and went inside before allowing his wife and others to leave. The standoff last several hours.

After Vandyke exited because of the pepper spray, police found two loaded .40 caliber handguns and a loaded assault rifle on the living room floor.

In a news release issued today, Officer Teresa Fuller said police "have responded to several of these types of incidents in the last couple of months."

"They are highly unpredictable and, as we’ve seen in jurisdictions around the country recently, can end in citizens and/or officers seriously injured or worse," Fuller wrote. "Officers of the Spokane Police Department rely on expert training and state of the arts tools they have to try and resolve the incidents as peacefully as possible."

Not all law enforcement officials carry pepper spray. Spokane County sheriff's officials say it comes down to personal preference.




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