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Morse Avenue Standoff in Rogers Park Ends Without Injuries, Police Say

By  Benjamin Woodard and Kyla Gardner | September 13, 2013 2:10pm | Updated on September 13, 2013 6:56pm

 Police set up a barricade during negotiations with a gunman at the building in the 1200 block of West Morse Avenue Friday, authorities said.
Rogers Park SWAT Response
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ROGERS PARK— A Rogers Park standoff with a gunman drew a large police response to West Morse Avenue Friday afternoon, police said, but it ended without any injuries about 2:15.

Officers responded to a hostage or barricade at 1225 W. Morse Ave. about 12:26 p.m., said Officer John Mirabelli, a Chicago Police Department spokesman.

"Everybody's safe. No one's hurt," said Rogers Park Police District Cmdr. Thomas Waldera, who was at the scene.

A man and woman were barricaded in an apartment in the building. The man had a gun, and authorities tried to negotiate with the man in an attempt to persuade him to put the gun on the apartment's balcony, police said.

A dozen SWAT team members, an armored personnel carrier, and many other police officers and paramedics were on the scene. Police were not allowing anyone to enter the building and blocked off Morse Avenue and surrounding alleys from Sheridan Road to North Lakewood Avenue.

Officers were seen carrying two crying children from the building around 2 p.m. Shortly afterward, a woman was escorted out of the building by police, followed by a man carried on a stretcher.

Police were able to "talk the subject out," said Officer Daniel O'Brien, police spokesman.

The man was placed in an ambulance, which remained idle on the scene for several minutes before driving away after the woman sat in the passenger seat and closed the door.

The man was being taken to St. Francis Hospital for a mental evaluation, O'Brien said.

An officer on the scene said the two children were not related to the standoff incident and were returned to the building.

Erick Ocasio, 46, owns a real estate business in a storefront of the same building where the standoff took place.

He said the woman involved in the incident had came into his business distraught and crying, claiming someone in an apartment above was holding her hostage with a gun, he said.

"She came in and she was on the floor crying," he said, standing outside his business. "She asked us to call the police."

Then she left, and about 40 minutes later police responded, he said.

John Warner, the CAPS beat facilitator for the area, was at the scene and said residents shouldn't worry.

"This side of Morse is a very quiet side of Morse," he said of the stretch of road home to a senior home and popular businesses like J.B. Alberto's Pizza and Act One Pub. "I think this is something that just happened."