Ariton stand-off suspect taken to hospital for evaluation, sheriff says

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DOTHAN, Ala. (WDHN) — Classes in Ariton were canceled Monday morning after the road to the school was closed due to a standoff with a potentially suicidal suspect.

According to Sheriff Wally Olson, the subject barricaded himself in a barn located behind the residence of one of the subject’s family members.

“They made contact with one individual,” Dale County Sheriff Wally Olson said at the time of the stand-off. “He refused to receive verbal command and basically fired a round-off. No one was hurt. Since then, we’ve had multiple rounds fired by the subject. We’re just, right now, trying to keep a perimeter and keep everybody safe.”

The armed individual was identified by authorities as a white man, but no name is to be released.

Due to the standoff, portions of the main road leading to Arition High School were closed off, prompting officials to delay the start of school.

However, after speaking to Olson around 8:00 a.m. and learning the situation had not changed, officials canceled school for the day.

However, the suspect was eventually taken into custody without incident.

“Ariton is a very close community,” Superintendent Ben Baker said. “So, we send out our prayers to the family that was affected by this, and (we’re) just so thankful that nobody was hurt as far as the family and law enforcement.”

“You’ve got to take into consideration, these are someone’s loved ones,” Olson said. “You know, we don’t want to something that’s going to hurt that individual. We want to make sure they get all the help they possibly can, and that’s why it’s so important for us to take him into custody without any problems.”

The incident is still under investigation, but no charges have been filed at this time.

Olson said that they don’t believe he’s a threat to the community, and they took him to a hospital to be evaluated.

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