A 22-year-old Pasco burglary suspect was arrested after a 3 1/2-hour standoff with police Tuesday afternoon.
Josue Contreras almost was arrested about 10:30 a.m. when Pasco police officers were sent to check on a possible burglary in progress at a home at 323 N. Second Ave.
Officers found an open basement window with a screen removed toward the back of the house, surrounded the home and called out to anyone inside.
Contreras tried to leave through a side door, police said, but three officers were waiting for him and had him at gunpoint with his hands up.
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A fence, however, appeared to separate Contreras from the officers and he decided to run.
"He bolted from the officers," said Pasco police Capt. Jim Raymond. "They started chasing him on foot."
The chase only went a couple of blocks and Contreras made his way into a house at 205 W. Bonneville St. Raymond said the house is owned by Contreras' family, but they reportedly are out of town.
Contreras is known to stay at the house, Raymond said.
Officers surrounded the home and when Contreras refused to come out, they got a warrant and broke down the back door at 11:45 a.m.
When officers started going in, they reportedly saw Contreras had a rifle and quickly backed out.
"Patrol officers were talking to him, trying to get him to give up," Raymond said.
When that failed, they called in the Tri-City Regional SWAT Team. SWAT members arrived about 1 p.m. and took strategic positions behind armored SWAT vehicles around the single-story home.
SWAT team negotiators eventually were able to convince Contreras to surrender, and he was taken into custody at 1:50 p.m.
Raymond said Pasco police have investigated a string of residential burglaries around town -- including some in that area -- and have made several arrests.
It wasn't clear if Contreras can be linked to any prior burglaries, but Raymond said Tuesday's break-in fits the pattern they recently have seen.
"Most residential burglaries are like this usually, within eyeshot (of the suspect's home)," he said.
-- Photo editor Bob Brawdy contributed to this report.
-- Paula Horton: 582-1556; firstname.lastname@example.org