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Gunman arrested after holding man hostage at Alamitos Beach apartment, police say

The gunman surrendered after an hours-long SWAT standoff in the area of First Street and Gaviota Avenue, according to the Long Beach Police Department.

Gunman arrested after holding man hostage at Alamitos Beach apartment, police say
Long Beach police officers and members of the SWAT team during a standoff involving an alleged hostage. Thursday, June 20, 2024. Photo by Candice Wong

A gunman who police say was holding another man hostage at a Long Beach apartment near Alamitos Beach has been arrested following an hours-long SWAT standoff, according to authorities.

The suspect, according to police, fired several shots in the air just before 10 p.m. Wednesday in the 2000 block of Ocean Boulevard. When police arrived to the scene, the suspect ran into an apartment building in the area of First Street and Gaviota Avenue, authorities said, adding that he had a hostage inside.

The LBPD’s SWAT team responded to the scene and rescued the hostage with the help of negotiators, authorities said. The hostage was not injured during the process, according to police.

Eventually, the SWAT team used tear gas to get the suspect to surrender and take him into custody during the early hours of Thursday morning, according to authorities and footage from the scene.

The suspect, identified by police as 31-year-old Erick L. Smith of Los Angeles, was arrested on suspicion of kidnapping, burglary, obstructing a peace officer, assault with a firearm, false imprisonment and for possessing a gun after previously being convicted of a felony, authorities said.

His bail was set at $1.2 million, police added.

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