Skip to comments.Lengthy standoff ends in Spring with man's suicide (Lender Assisted Suicide?)
Posted on 10/29/2007 7:09:01 AM PDT by Wally_Kalbacken
A 12-hour standoff ended this morning with a north Houston man lobbing Molotov cocktails at Houston Police before taking his own life rather than vacate a home he'd lost to foreclosure.
James Hahn, a chemist, had told police he would not be taken from the home alive, said Capt. Bruce Williams, an HPD spokesman.
" 'You know what I do for a living and you know what I am capable of,' " said Williams, recalling one of the conversations police had with the man on Wednesday.
The standoff began at 1:10 p.m. Wednesday when police said Hahn pulled a gun on Precinct 4 constable deputies who had attempted to serve him with a warrant for eviction at the home in the 21000 block of Covington Bridge in Spring, authorities said.
It would appear that Hahn had prepared for the standoff. He had nailed plywood over windows and doors and stuffed insulation into cracks. A cache of weapons and explosive devices were found in the home, along with a gas mask, chemical suit similar to those worn by Haz-Mat crew members.
Williams said it explained why Hahn didn't vacate the house after police shot tear gas into the residence on three separate occasions in the hopes of bringing the standoff to an end.
Williams said Hahn was recently divorced, depressed and struggled with financial problems and drug addiction.
"We believe this particular individual was not going to go peacefully," Williams said.
Throughout the day police said Hahn had set small fires in several places in the home. HPD SWAT officers arrived at the home about 3 p.m. Residents living in nearby were asked to leave their homes until Hahn was taken into custody.
About 11:20 p.m. Wednesday, police repeatedly spoke to the man using a loudspeaker they hooked up in his backyard in the Covington Bridge subdivision..
"This is the Houston Police Department. Come out your front door with nothing in your hands and listen for instructions," an officer said. "You need to come out now."
It was just one move in a series of efforts throughout the evening Wednesday to remove the man without deadly force, police said.
Sounds of tear gas being deployed into the barricaded man's home drew Tammy Sample out of her home late Wednesday.
Sample, 51, came out to investigate with her Yorkie, Bruiser, in her arms. She said she wouldn't be able to sleep until the standoff was resolved.
"It sounds horrible, but it was kind of exciting at the beginning," Sample said. "... Now it's just scary because you never think it's going to happen where you live."
Sample opened her home Wednesday to another neighbor who was denied access to her house as a result of the standoff.
Shirley Bell, 43, said she returned to the neighborhood about 3 p.m. to find police blocking her way home.
Bell said she never thought the siege would last so long.
"It seems like for whatever comes, he's ready," she said of the man.
Sample agreed. Prior to the standoff, it would appear the man was preparing for something, police said.
"He had installed surveillance cameras and boarded up his windows," Sample said. "He was ready all right."
Shortly after midnight Wednesday, residents could hear police pleading with the man again to surrender.
"We're not leaving today. And this is only going to get worse for you come out now," a SWAT negotiator said.
An hour and a half later, Hahn shot himself as officers closed in on his home.
Residents noted there had been a number of foreclosures in the neighborhood lately.
But none imagined that Hahn would take his life rather than leave a home that no longer belonged to him.
Chronicle reporter Dale Lezon contributed to this report.
Why didn’t he just make the payments?
I agree with you.
No immediate threat.
No reason to push the limits right now.
Instead, the police push and push and push.
Maybe if we hung a few of these LEOs who are so willing to kill for the enforcement of an eviction notice, the LEOs might reevaluate their position.
Who are "they"? The article says he took his own life.
That "drug addiction" thing might have had something to do with it.
This guy was spending his money on the wrong things -- if he was really interested in keeping the house!
So you think folks shouldn’t have to pay for the things they get?
Dumb Axe cops. The guy wasn’t endangering anything. Big big lawsuit at hand.
Nowhere in the article does it say that law enforcement was trying to kill him. It is clear who the agressor was.
police said Hahn pulled a gun on Precinct 4 constable deputies who had attempted to serve him with a warrant
But let's "hang a few LEOs"
Not only that some posters apparently think the police killed him. Despite the fact that he’s the one who pulled the trigger. Still, it’s a sad situation.
Yeah, like pulling a gun and lobbing fire bombs is showing his desire to settle the matter peacefully.
Why didn’t they burn and gas him like at Waco? The Branch Davidians were just a bunch of Christian fundamentalists who were trying to keep to themselves peacefully. /sarc
“The guy wasnt endangering anything.”
Other than arson, pulling a gun on the deputies, and throwing Molotov cocktails at the police. Other than that, the guy’s harmless.
Not content to take his home,
Well, the foreclosing bank is going to have a problem getting anything decent for that house,now that a violent self inflicted death has occured there! I shed crocodile tears for them. I shed real tears for the children who won’t have a dad as well as the loss of any support money that might have gone to them!
His ex-wife’s lawyer spent all of his money.
Ahh....drugs are free these days then.
It sounds like his ex-wife was right about him.
Sounds a bit like suicide by cop, although he then shot himself.
Of course the cop-haters will flood to this thread, but it looks like we can smoke out a few socialists here as well.
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