A tragic incident on Saturday in Secaucus resulted in a man locking himself inside his apartment and killing his pet dog. The standoff with police lasted for a period of seven hours at The Harper.
According to Secaucus Police Chief Dennis Miller, the incident began at 7:58 pm when police received a 9-1-1 call from a neighbor at The Harper, which is located at 100 Park Place Drive. Miller stated, “The caller reported that her fiancée, a 29-year-old male of Secaucus, was making irrational statements. A subsequent phone call was merged between the caller, the caller’s fiancée and Secaucus Police Department 9-1-1 operator. During that phone call, the male made homicidal statements.”
The Chief added that, “Secaucus Police Officers were dispatched to the residence to check on the male’s well-being. Upon their knock on the apartment door they were denied entry and the police officers were threatened to be harmed. It was further confirmed that the male was alone in the apartment with an Australian Sheppard dog.”
Police evacuated residents from nearby apartments. Chief Miller stated, “The Hudson County Regional SWAT Team was activated along with a screener from the “Mobile Psychological Crisis Unit,” based out of the Jersey City Medical Center. Over more than a seven-hour period, numerous attempts, through a variety of means, were made to negotiate with this male to no avail.”
Finally, at 2:18 am, members of the SWAT Team entered the apartment and found that the man had killed the dog. Police took the man into custody. The man’s identity will not be released due to the nature of the incident.
He was arrested and charged with terroristic threats. Chief Miller says he was taken to the Jersey City Medical Center for a mental health evaluation. “I am extremely proud of the decision making and the tact displayed by the 9-1-1 operator, the initial responding officers and supervisor, along with my Command Staff who also responded to the scene,” Chief Miller said. “Although I am extremely saddened for the resident for the loss of her dog, I will say that the patience and professionalism of members of the Secaucus Police Department and Hudson County Regional SWAT were the immediate cause that this incident ended with no injury to the subject, police personnel or any civilian. I want to personally thank everyone who responded to this incident.” This charge is merely an accusation and the defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty. This matter remains under investigation and additional charges may be forthcoming.