No shots fired in 2-hour Granby standoff
October 7, 2010
GRANBY – A report of a suicidal man with a weapon brought a SWAT team here on Wednesday, Oct. 6, resulting in a 2-hour standoff during which more than 30 people were locked down at the elementary school and the Grand River Assembly of God, streets were closed and neighbors were evacuated.
Michael Palmerino, 33, of 252 West Garnet Ave. was forcibly arrested at 6:45 p.m. and taken to Granby Medical Center for evaluation, according to the affidavit for his arrest. He was found to have a blood alcohol level of 0.197 percent, police said.
He was booked into Grand County Jail and placed on suicide watch overnight and was headed to Colorado West Mental Health on Thursday for evaluation.
Officers found no weapons upon searching the premises following the incident.
The initial report came in around 4:50 p.m. According to Fraser/Winter Park Police Chief Glen Trainor, who was part of the multi-jurisdictional response team, an ex-girlfriend made the 9-1-1 call. She was never on the scene but was concerned that a weapon might be involved, Trainor said.
Following the incident, a relative said that in a separate incident during the summer Palmerino was threatening suicide and a weapon was involved, Trainor said.
When officers from Granby, Fraser/Winter Park and the Grand County Sheriff’s Office arrived on-scene, Palmerino had barricaded himself in the residence and refused to come out, according to the arrest affidavit.
As a precaution, and due to the report of a possible weapon, the officers evacuated the two neighboring residences and attempted to evacuate the residence across the street, Trainor said. The officers also asked people at the elementary school and the Assembly of God to remain inside.
West Garnet Avenue was closed from High Street to Selak Drive (1 block) during the incident.
After nearly 1 hour and 50 minutes, Det. John Stein of the Grand County Sheriff’s Office arrived and was able to talk Palmerino out of the house. Once on the landing, Palmerino continued to disobey the direct order of the officers, according to the affidavit.
It was another 20 minutes before he finally came off the landing and began walking toward the officers, the affidavit states.
Palmerino was told to “get on the ground” several times but refused, the affidavit states. An officer eventually forced him to the ground and handcuffed him while he continued to struggle, according to the affidavit.
No shots were fired, Trainor said.
More than 30 people participating in after-school and recreation district activities were forced to stay inside Granby Elementary school during the incident, including an eight-person yoga class, a 15-person Tae Kwon Do class, about 10 teachers and 2 after-school-program students and their parents, said elementary school Principal Andrea Verosky.
They were allowed to return to their vehicles shortly before the resolution of the incident, Trainor said.
Middle Park Emergency Response Team comprises officers from Granby and Fraser/Winter Park police departments. The sheriff’s office, EMS and a Colorado State Patrol trooper also assisted.
Granby Police Chief Bill Housley was out of town on vacation this week.
– Reid Armstrong can be reached at 970-887-3334 ext. 19610 or email@example.com.