Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Iraq War Veteran and police in 7-hour stand-off

Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department SWAT were on the scene Tuesday morning near the IUPUI campus responding to a disturbance call around 4 a.m. about an armed man in his apartment.

The above is from the Indiana Daily Student and "IUPUI" is Indiana University Purdue University-Indianapolis. The armed man was a 26-year-old Iraq War veteran named Jason Carrera.

jason carrera

Jason Carrera photo from his Facebook page.

CBS' WISH Indianapolis has a text and video report
and, from the video, here's a partial transcript:

Jay Hermancinski: Well the early morning standoff took place here at the Lockefield Gardens apartments, adjacent to IUPUI's campus. Police say the soldier involved has been under great stress lately. His wife recently told him she wanted a divorce, earlier in the month he was involved in a car jacking and the soldier is also dealing with the stresses of having served in Iraq. The seven-hour standoff ended like this: 26-year-old Jason Carrera gave himself up as he sat down on a stretcher SWAT team members moved in to handcuff him. Police say the National Guard soldier had served two tours in Iraq.

Lt. Jeff Duhamell: He's had trouble adjusting when he gets back. Definitely Post Traumatic issues.

Jay Hermancinski: Officers were called to the apartment complex just after 4:00 a.m. [Tuesday morning]. The initial call was for a disturbance. They say Carrera had been drinking, got into some type of argument and cut himself. He later refused to leave his apartment.

Lt. Jeff Duhamell: He had several weapons. At one time, he took one of the weapons to his head. Officers backed out and at that point they called in for negotiators and the SWAT team.

At which point, John Tuohy (Indianapolis Star) reports, police "called Rick Turner, who operates three camera-equipped robots for the Marion County Emergency Management Agency. Sending in the robot quickly defused a tense situation that had disrupted campus traffic and parking for hours."

WRTV's 6News (link has text and video of Julie Pursley's report) picks up from there:

"The robot went inside. He was on the couch. The robot was able to take a blanket off him and he got up," said Lt. Jeff Duhamell said. "At that point, he came out on his own."
Carrera suffered an arm injury, apparently from the broken glass in the initial incident, police said. He was taken to a hospital.
Carrera was preliminarily charged with criminal recklessness with a weapon, a felony, along with criminal mischief and disorderly conduct, both misdemeanors. Police seized three weapons and assorted ammunition from the apartment.

Pursley also notes that Jason Carrera was "the victim of a car jacking on Sept. 6." Tuohy notes that Carrera was asleep on the couch. If so, some of the alarm may have been a bit much. Many of the reports mention a male roommate -- with differing times on when he left the apartment but all agreeing he statements indicated that Carrera was somehow dangerous to others or to himself.

Earlier this month Michael S. Cote Jr. died serving in Iraq. DoD announced September 21st: "Spc. Michael S. Cote Jr., 20, of Denham Springs, La., died Sept. 19 in Balad, Iraq, of wounds suffered when the Blackhawk helicopter he was in crashed. He was assigned to the 1st Battalion, 52nd Aviation Regiment, Task Force 49, Fort Wainwright, Alaska." Chris Freiberg (Daily News Miner) reports on a memorial service:

"He was a good person all around, and I don't think anyone could ask for a better person to be in their life," said Spc. Kyle Delory, who knew Cote since he first came to Fort Wainwright.
But what Cote seemed most proud of was his family. He met his wife, Ashlee, while they were both in basic training at Fort Jackson, South Carolina. Since such relationships are frowned upon in basic training, they would secretly pass notes to each other and set dates for Sunday church services.
The couple was married just days after they completed their training, and their daughter, Brooke, was born in March.

Meanwhile the Winona Daily News carries an announcement regarding Iraq War veteran JR Martinez who will be speaking on "The American Dream: Inspiring Others Through His Amazing Story of Resilience, Perseverance and Optimism" at Winona State University Monay night at 7:00 pm (East Hall, Kryzsko Commons) and again Tuesday morning at Minnesota State College-Southeast Technical's Auditorium and Tuesday at 4:00 pm at WSU-Rochester's Memorial Hall. He will be sharing his experiences including a landmine explosion that left him wounded, badly burned and required 32 surgeries. The presentation is also part of Hispanic Heritage Month.

Other veteran and service member news might get squeezed into the next entry but Odierno's testifying this morning and we're trying to make that. This is dictated.

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oh boy it never ends