Police in Wallace, North Carolina, have provided more information on a police standoff that occurred at a Walmart store early Wednesday.
The Wallace Police Department (WPD) responded to a call about an armed robbery taking place at a Walmart location shortly after 2 a.m. on May 3.
When they arrived at the scene, they located a white male subject later identified as Georgia resident Jerry Arnold Flakes Jr, 30, sitting in the driver seat of a delivery truck. Flakes reportedly placed a firearm under his chin and told the officers “Either you’re going to shoot me or I’m going to shoot myself.”
Police later detailed the events that occurred at the loading dock that preceded the standoff.
‘Video surveillance shows Flakes walking to the loading docks of Walmart from the woods nearby. Flakes attempted to get in a truck backed up to the loading dock. The truck driver came outside, ready to leave, when he encountered Flakes. Flakes pointed his rifle toward the driver and told him to get in the truck. The driver turned and ran away. Flakes gave chase while pointing his weapon at the driver. The driver threw down the keys to the truck and ran back into Walmart. Flakes picked up the keys and went back to the truck, and attempted to drive away. That’s when officers arrived and made contact with Flakes and thus began the four-hour standoff,” WPD said.
After negotiators spent hours trying to coax Flakes out of the truck, Flakes allegedly pointed a rifle at law enforcement. Officers responding by opening fire.
Police were then able to approach the truck and found Flakes alive lying on top of the rife. He was taken into custody without further incident.
Flakes was transported to a hospital for treatment of minor injuries and a mental health evaluation.
When Flakes is released from the hospital, police say he will be charged with Robbery with a Dangerous Weapon, Assault on a Law Enforcement Officer with a Firearm, Possession of a Firearm by a Convicted Felon, Possession of a Stolen Motor Vehicle, Felony Breaking and Entering, Breaking and Entering of a Motor Vehicle, and Possession of methamphetamine.
“There is no question that Flakes was dealing with a mental health issue and under the influence of narcotics. We take these incidents very seriously and try our best to bring a positive resolution to the incident. Officers from every responding agency remained professional and calm throughout the standoff. Negotiators gave Flakes every opportunity to surrender and offered to get Flake mental health assistance. But when Flakes turned his rifle toward the unarmed negotiator, he put the officers in a situation where they had no choice but to discharge their weapons. Without question, the swift action by these officers saved the negotiator and themselves from potential injury or death,” WPD said.