Hours-long SWAT standoff ends with arrest


A sheriff’s official stands at the edge of a SWAT standoff with a domestic violence suspect in Bonita

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SAN DIEGO — Deputies looking for a wanted domestic violence suspect Friday surrounded a home near Chula Vista Golf Course and called in a SWAT team for backup, leading to an eight-hour standoff that ended with the man’s arrest.

Deputies went to the house in the 4300 block of Allen School Lane in Bonita to serve 37-year-old James Gilbert with an arrest warrant about 10 a.m., according to sheriff’s officials.

After Gilbert ignored deputies’ orders to surrender for more than an hour, a special weapons and tactics squad was sent to the neighborhood to take up positions around the residence, Lt. Michelle Craig said.

Administrators at nearby Ella B. Allen School secured pupils in their classrooms while a sheriff’s patrol helicopter circled overhead, directing the suspect via loudspeaker to surrender peacefully. A stretch of the street in front of the campus was closed to through traffic as a further precaution.

In the early afternoon, the school lockdown was lifted and students were released under special deputy-overseen security measures at their usual dismissal time, according to Chula Vista Elementary School District officials.

Shortly after 6 p.m., the suspect exited the house and was taken into custody, Lt. Dave Perkins said. Gilbert was expected to be booked into county jail on suspicion of brandishing a weapon, making criminal threats and resisting arrest.

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