Grocery Store Theft Leads to Arrest of Suspect After Lengthy Standoff

Earlier today, Yakima SWAT officers arrested 40-year-old Leon Searles after a fourteen-hour standoff at a home in Yakima.

Originally, Searles was wanted following his reported involvement in a theft incident at a local grocery story.  When confronted by security personnel at the store, Searles became combative and fled the scene. 

A short time later, Yakima police officers located Searles at his home.  Searles made threats to use firearms against officers.  He then barricaded himself inside his home.

Officers made numerous attempts to negotiate with Searles, but he did not comply and, instead, fired multiple rounds from inside his house.  A person familiar with Searles told police that he had more than one gun inside the home, including a high-power rifle. 

Attempts to deescalate the situation were unsuccessful.  Due to the danger presented to officers and the public, tactical officers used multiple breaching techniques to gain entry to the home and compliance from Searles.  No police officers fired lethal firearms during the incident. 

The situation was resolved without injury to officers or Searles, who was booked into the Yakima County Jail on multiple felony charges. 

This incident is being investigated by the Yakima Police Department Internal Affairs Unit.

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