Police have captured a wanted man who climbed onto rooftops in a San Fernando Valley neighborhood while armed with a rifle after a freeway chase today, and then barricaded himself in a home for several hours. The incident prompted authorities to shut down nearby freeway on-ramps, lock down schools, and evacuate at least one as police waited him out, authorities said. Five hours after the chase began, SWAT officers fired a gas into the home, and television reports showed the suspect walk out with his hands up and lie face-down on the grass in the backyard of a home with his hands behind his head and two dogs nearby. Seven SWAT officers converged to take him into custody.
The officers were continuing to clear the area, and authorities had not yet released his name, police said. The chase began about 10:15am when police tried to arrest the 40-year-old man for allegedly making criminal threats several days ago. But he drove off in his red Nissan Altima, leading to a 45-minute high-speed chase along several freeways that ended in North Hollywood, police said. The man was dressed in white and carried what appeared to be an assault-style rifle. He pointed the rifle at his pursuers several times during the chase, but police were investigating whether he fired it, a police commander said. Click for more on the story. (Read more SWAT team stories.)