Wheeling police closed several blocks of Main Street in North Wheeling on Wednesday to protect the public during an incident involving a man with a gun.
The street remained closed to vehicle and pedestrian traffic for about one hour, beginning at 10:15 a.m., after a male caller to 911 said he had a gun to his head and was planning to injure himself. Police we able to get into the house and talk the man for about 30 minutes to diffuse the situation.
Traffic on the busy thoroughfare was rerouted through North Park during the incident. Police instructed parents waiting with their children to catch a school bus to take their children home until they could be safety picked up. A short time later, a bus arrived for the children several blocks from the scene.
Photo by Fred Connors
Wheeling police prepare to enter a North Wheeling residence Thursday to confront a man who said he had a gun to his head and was planning to injure himself.
Police Chief Shawn Schwertfeger said the unidentified man was cooperative with police.
"He did not appear to be a danger to himself or to our officers," he said.
The chief said Thursday's event turned into to somewhat of a training exercise for the department's SWAT Team and Crisis Negotiation Team.
"We have had some joint training at West Virginia Northern Community College conducted by the FBI," he said. "We also have some special equipment to that type of assignment."
Schwertfeger said the department will be sending more officers for additional training.
"We are making good progress," he said. "I am very pleased with the membership of our teams and their dedication"