SWAT standoff at Lakeland apartment

- A suspect is in custody following an hours-long standoff at the West Lake Apartments in Lakeland on Wednesday. 

A SWAT team was on the scene of what what was initially a domestic dispute. Police said 44-year-old Nelson Santiago barricaded himself in the apartment located on Hartsell Road, and could be armed.

According to police, the incident began at around 11 p.m. Tuesday night. Santiago's girlfriend stated that they had gotten into an argument and he punched her in the nose. He left the scene, and witnesses saw him brandishing a firearm as he ran away. 

Police also want to question Santiago in relation to an aggravated assault case that occurred earlier that day. 

Around 9 p.m. on Monday, police say Santiago pulled a gun on an individual and pointed it at them. 

The State Fire Marshal Bomb Squad also responded to the scene.

Crews deployed a chemical agent into one of the rooms of the apartment, but Santiago still did not respond. 

Sgt. Terry Gross said in a statement to media that they have concern because Santiago has a lengthy criminal history, and presumably has a gun. 

"We're taking our time. Time is on our side," said Sgt. Gross. "We're moving very slow with this to make sure that no one is injured."

Santiago was finally taken into custody just before noon, after officers used the chemical agent again and sent a robot inside. 

Police say he attempted to run from the apartment, but a K9 unit stopped him so that officers could make the arrest. 

No one was injured other than Santiago, who suffered a dog bite.

Stay with FOX 13 as this story develops.

Up Next:

Up Next

  • SWAT standoff at Lakeland apartment
  • Judge, quoting Carly Simon, denies request to move trial so witness can watch eclipse
  • Sundial, Bok Tower Gardens popular for eclipse-watchers
  • Search for female TV thief who struck twice, deputies say
  • Busy MacDill AFB about to get busier
  • Building codes have changed in 25 years since Hurricane Andrew
  • Donate used solar eclipse glasses to kids in South America, Asia
  • Manatee Co. monument brings protesters Monday night
  • Man who hit tow truck driver takes plea deal
  • Elderly woman followed home from store, robbed in driveway