Man charged with holding woman, 3 children hostage in Warren apartment

Local News

The entire ordeal at the Highland Terrace Apartments lasted nearly four hours

WARREN, Ohio (WKBN) – A man who police say held a 25-year-old woman and three children hostage in a Warren apartment was arrested nearly four hours after it began.

Shawn Riley, 25, is facing charges of kidnapping and felonious assault.

After hours of negotiations with police, investigators say Riley surrendered peacefully. Neighbors were worried it was going to turn out much worse.

The crowd of about 50 neighbors cheered and applauded as Riley was escorted out of the Highland Terrace apartment on Lane Drive SW and into a Warren police cruiser.

“I think it’s a great job they did,” said Jacquline Gore, who lives in the apartment complex. “I was glad to see as many officers out here as I did. The SWAT cars…our mayor came out, thank him.”

She was happy to see so many people showing concern.

Gore was among the many on edge, anxiously waiting for the hostage situation to end.

SWAT officers in body armor stood guard and crime scene tape roped off a section of the complex.

“I love it out here and I don’t like to see things like this happen because that’s around the time kids were getting out of school,” Gore said.

According to investigators, this all started around 4:30 p.m. Tuesday.

“I was looking outside my window and I saw one of the officers coming to my house and I went to see what he wanted, and he said, ‘Please evacuate,'” Samuel Guzman said.

Although it seemed quiet in the parking lot, the crisis response team was busy negotiating with the suspect.

Close to three hours into the situation, they were able to get the children and woman out of the apartment. They were looked over by medical officials.

“We know there was an assault that went on there so we just wanted to make sure she was OK,” said Warren Police Captain Jeff Cole.

At this time, investigators don’t know the relationship between Riley and the children. Cole said Riley is the woman’s boyfriend.

A woman who didn’t want to be identified said she knows Riley through a mutual friend.

“They just got back together recently so, you know, he’s a bad dude,” she said. “If you’re telling your neighbors, ‘Call the cops if you hear me screaming.'”

Four hours into the standoff — a break, when police said Riley surrendered peacefully.

“No use of force whatsoever and that’s a big plus for this type of situation,” Cole said.

Along with local police, SWAT and the Trumbull County Sheriff’s Office were also there.

“I’m so proud of our department and all of the law enforcement community on how they responded,” Mayor Doug Franklin said. “We’re very fortunate because this could have had a different result.”

Police said Riley did have a knife but they didn’t find any other weapons.

Officials will meet with the Warren City prosecutor Wednesday morning to decide if more charges should be filed.

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