Police shot and wounded a Tacoma man who held his wife and 11 other people hostage inside a Lakewood bank Tuesday morning.
Police spokesman Lt. Chris Lawler said just before noon, offers were dispatched to
a Washington State Employees Credit Union, where the suspect was holding his wife and bank customers hostage. Attempts to establish communication by a crisis negotiator failed.
After 45 minutes, the suspect walked into the bank's glass foyer with his wife and what appeared to be a handgun. Fearing for the safety of the woman and the hostages, officers shot and disabled the suspect. He was transported to Tacoma General Hospital where he was in critical condition.
The suspect was identified as 47-year-old Arnold Flores of Tacoma. Officers said he and his wife were married for 26 years and were recently separated with a history of domestic abuse. It appeared the two agreed had agreed to meet at the credit union to resolve financial matters. But once the two were inside, the suspect attacked his wife, stabbing her with a knife and then pulling out a handgun.
Upon inspection, officers discovered the gun used by the suspect was a realistic looking .177 caliber BB gun.
The wife's injuries were not life-threatening.
The incident is being investigated by the Lakewood Police Department, with the assitance from the Cooperative Cities Crimes Response Unit and the Pierce County Prosecutor's Office.