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Truck driver arrested following standoff sparked by his incessant honking at officers responding to crash scene

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A truck driver was arrested on Thursday after threatening to drive through a crash scene, honking incessantly, and engaging in a standoff with police. 

The series of incidents happened on August 17th at around 3 p.m. in Cleveland, Texas. 

According to Bluebonnet News, 53-year-old truck driver Daniel Joseph Georgianni was stuck in traffic caused by a previous accident at the intersection of Blair and Belcher streets between Washington Ave. and US 59 when he became irate about the standstill. 

“The truck driver kept bumping his horn and continued bumping his horn. After the officers told him that he was going to be there for a little while and could not move, he threatened to drive through our crash scene if the officers did not move the accident quicker,” said Chief Broussard. 

“An officer went up to the truck and told him again to stop bumping his horn at them. He refused again. The officer returned back to the crash scene and tried to finish up working the scene. The truck driver laid on his horn several more times.”

The officer returned to the truck one more time and warned Georgianni that he would be arrested for noise violations if he did not stop honking. Broussard says that is when the situation escalated.  

“He refused to identify himself to the officer. At that time, he was told that they would have to get him out of his vehicle some kind of way, either with a pepper ball or additional non-lethal weapons. He told the officers that he had a gun and was not afraid to use it. That’s when the situation escalated further,” Broussard said.

After being threatened with the gun, the officer backed away and called for backup. Nearby buildings were evacuated as a precaution and hostage negotiators got on the phone with the agitated truck driver. 

“The hostage negotiators were able to talk to him over the phone and get him to step out of his vehicle. He agreed to leave his weapon inside the truck,” Broussard said. The Ruger handgun was later recovered from the truck. Officers do not believe that Georgianni was under the influence of drugs or alcohol at the time of the standoff. 

Georgianni is facing charges of Resisting Arrest, a Class A misdemeanor, and Interference With Public Duties, a Class B misdemeanor. Additional charges are still pending. 

“What began as an irate driver excessively honking their tractor-trailer air horn turned into what was essentially a barricaded subject.  Law Enforcement continually expresses to everyone who encounters police officers – cooperate with the officer.  We see instance after instance where minor encounters escalate because someone wants to argue with the officer on the side of the road.”

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