(FL) 92-year-old woman holds off deputies in 12-hour standoff


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Drizzt
March 31, 2003, 05:15 PM
The Advocate (Baton Rouge, LA.)

March 27, 2003, Thursday METRO EDITION

SECTION: News

LENGTH: 484 words

HEADLINE: 92-year-old woman holds off deputies in 12-hour standoff

BYLINE: BOB ANDERSON

SOURCE: Florida parishes bureau

DATELINE: HAMMOND

BODY:
HAMMOND - A 92-year-old woman fired shots at deputies in a 12-hour-standoff that ended without injury Wednesday morning, deputies said.

When deputies finally got inside the woman's house, they confiscated a pistol and a shotgun, the Tangipahoa Parish Sheriff's Office reported.

After receiving a call raising concerns about the woman Tuesday night, deputies said they went to her home east of Hammond to check on her welfare.

She fired several shots at them, possibly thinking someone was coming to take her from her home, authorities said.

Deputies said they pulled back for more than seven hours and tried to enter the home again Wednesday morning, but the woman fired another shot. Again they retreated.

"There was no reason to do any kind of forced entry," sheriff's spokeswoman Patti Giannoble said.

"We simply decided to wait it out."

At first, investigators were unable to make telephone contact with Nettie Johnson, 92, of South Airport Road. But Wednesday morning, family members, and later, Sheriff Ed Layrisson, managed to speak with her by phone.

Officials said Johnson is the mother of state Sen. Jon Johnson, D-New Orleans. Layrisson was talking with Johnson when deputies moved in and secured her firearms, Giannoble said.

Deputies took the woman to North Oaks Hospital, mainly to make sure she was all right after the ordeal, Giannoble said.

Giannoble said deputies then planned to discuss with the woman her reasons for becoming upset.

Giannoble said she did not know what further action would be taken. "She's lived there for as long as I can remember," said neighbor Carlos Notariano, a member of the Parish Council.

"She's been a good neighbor and a good citizen," Notariano said.

The matter began around 10 p.m. Tuesday when sheriff's deputies received a call of concern about the woman's welfare and went to the home.

When their knocks on her door went unanswered, deputies attempted to enter the house but were fired upon from inside, Giannoble said. "We backed off," she said.

Members of the sheriff's Special Response Team took up positions outside the home, deputies said.

It appeared Johnson was in the rear bedroom of the home, Giannoble said.

Unable to talk to the woman, deputies attempted to knock on the door again shortly before 6 a.m., but the woman fired another single shot, Giannoble said.

The Sheriff's Office closed Airport Road from Interstate 12 to Old Covington Highway from 6 a.m. until 10 a.m. to prevent any accidental harm to motorists, the spokeswoman said.

Later, telephone contact was established and the woman spoke with a son and a granddaughter.

While Layrisson was speaking with the woman on the phone, explaining that nobody wanted to hurt her, deputies were able to move in and secure the weapons in the house, Giannoble said. Nettie Johnson was not holding a firearm at the time, Giannoble reported.

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El Tejon
March 31, 2003, 05:19 PM
Hammond? That's where the movie "Christmas Story" is set! Maybe it was a Red Ryder BB gun???

(Oh, wait, it sez LA, not IN).:D

CZ-75
March 31, 2003, 05:50 PM
"We simply decided to wait it out."


Until nap time?

Could've dressed their tactical assault squad up as "meals on wheels."

Coronach
March 31, 2003, 06:10 PM
Glad that ended well.

Mike

jsalcedo
March 31, 2003, 06:18 PM
Shooting a 92 year old lady is better left to a federal agency.

If the feds had showed up she would have been portrayed as a white supremicist, with a meth lab and cache of automatic weapons.

If she had been a 25 year old black male then there would be only a body bag and a blurb on the 6:00 news.

spankaveli
April 1, 2003, 08:47 AM
Saw that on the news. Crazy old lady.

BTW, That's LA, not FL. ;)

Quantrill
April 1, 2003, 09:19 AM
Good for her. Shame on them. Quantrill

280PLUS
April 1, 2003, 09:40 AM
:D

shermacman
April 1, 2003, 09:59 AM
Obviously there was nothing wrong with her. A healthy lady with a healthy distrust of the government. They should have driven away, case solved.

Double Naught Spy
April 1, 2003, 11:43 AM
Granny did well, all things considered. I don't usually answer the door at 10:00 PM or later and no doubt I would be likely to answer an attempted entry with force. At least the law got lucky here and weren't tracking down the old lady in AR that shot her 67 year old son-in-law with a .22 at something like 200 yards, one shot, open iron sights, killing him.

KelBench400
April 1, 2003, 12:17 PM
Please tell me that some of you aren't saying that firing at the police when they are called to your house is a good idea. I don't think they had much of a choice in checking up on the old lady. Imagine if they would have knocked and then left when no one answered. Meanwhile the old lady is incapacitated inside her home and later dies. Can anyone out there spell liability?

Firing on the police is just plain stupid and irresponsible. Just answer the door. Or at least call out and explain you are alright but unable to come to the door. Man, people are far too paranoid these days.

-Kel

Oh, and please think about how it looks to the general public when we congratulate someone for firing on the police for an irrational fear of 'being taken out of one's home'.

Matt G
April 1, 2003, 01:28 PM
Someone explain to me, precisely, why folks are rooting for a deranged old woman to shoot at deputies who were simply answering a call for service?!?

If you ask me, the Tangipahoa Parish S.O. deputies handled this one superbly. Many agencies would have over-reacted, or even answered it with what would usually be considered "appropriate force." They chose to wait her out, make telephone contact to distract her and guarantee where she was going to be in the house, and move in without violence.

That's professionalism that is to be applauded. Hopefully Granny is being put into an assisted care living facility. And, yes, I actually do hope she's no longer armed. :(

Tamara
April 1, 2003, 01:35 PM
Minus several thousand for good judgement, but ten out of ten for style, at least. ;)

It was a plucky response, Matt, it's just that her IFF software is obviously on the fritz.

444
April 1, 2003, 01:58 PM
From the information given, it appears to me to be a case of simple confusion. This old woman has someone come to her home who she doesn't know probably banging on the door and windows. She attempts to defend herself. They announce that they are the police. Since she didn't call the police, she didn't do anything to prompt the police to respond (that she knows about), she probably assumes that they are lying in an attempt to gain her trust. When she talks with someone she knows on the phone who assure her that everything is OK, the situation is over.

I have run hundreds of these "welfare check" calls, and continue to do so on a daily basis. Keep in mind that the person who's house you are going to, didn't call you. They don't know you are coming. You are uninvited. Just because someone else thinks these people ought to be checked on doesn't mean that the person in question agrees. How you handle these calls requires some decison making. You shouldn't just break down doors assuming the person is in trouble and can't get to the door. Often times the people simply arn't home and since they are adults who have taken care of themselves for many years, they don't think they have to check with anyone for permission to leave their own house, and don't feel like they need to check in with anyone. I once ran a call where a cancer patient hadn't bee heard from for several days and someone called us. We got there and the police were already on the scene. They said that they had pounded on the door and no one answers. The condo had steel security bars on the front door, so the police were not equipped to handle a forcible entry into the condo. We got out hydralic pump and hydralic spreaders (what some people call, "the jaws of life"). But we had second thoughts about busting up this guys door. So, a locksmith was called. Two guys on scene had lockpick sets and attempted to pick the lock unsuccessfully. The locksmith arrived and started working on the lock. Probably 1/2 hour had elapsed when the guy came to the door. He wanted to know what the hell we were doing, and if we had damaged his door. We told him what we wanted and asked why he didn't answer the door ? He said it was his house and he didn't have to answer the door if he didn't want to. He said the same thing about answering the phone. He didn't want to talk on the phone and wasn't expecting anybody at his door that he wanted to see. He is right, this was HIS house and no one but him has any right to insist that he check in with anybody, answer his phone, or answer his door.

mpthole
April 1, 2003, 02:10 PM
KelBench400 said, I don't think they had much of a choice in checking up on the old lady. Imagine if they would have knocked and then left when no one answered. Meanwhile the old lady is incapacitated inside her home and later dies. Can anyone out there spell liability? The police have NO liability when it comes to any one individual's welfare or protection.

Matt G
April 2, 2003, 04:11 AM
See, 444? Your cancer patient acted in perfectly lucid, intelligent, and responsible manner. Yer durn skippy he has the right not to answer the phone and the door, no matter WHO calls. I completely support his response to the situation. :)

Our granny in question, however, committed at least 3 counts of Attempted Capital Murder!!!

Bigggggggggggggggggggg difference! :scrutiny:

Edward429451
April 2, 2003, 09:05 AM
for an irrational fear of 'being taken out of one's home'.

Mmmm, irrational is the wrong word here. Not in this day & age.

Nuff said. My flame suit's at the cleaners.

buzz_knox
April 2, 2003, 09:20 AM
The police have NO liability when it comes to any one individual's welfare or protection.

True, unless they assume a duty by interfering with other assistance reaching the person. For example, if they had knocked, got no answer, and told the family there wasn't a problem, they could have liability if the family believed them and didn't go over to check on the woman and something happened to her as a result.

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