Police standoff in West Ashley takes human touch to end

Around 11:15 Monday morning, a Wachovia bank in West Ashley was robbed by two men. Around the same time, a third man led police on a short car chase near that bank, that would lead to an hour-and-a-half standoff.

Today, police believe that they have those three men in custody. -- But that's not what strikes me about the story.

Alonzo Brown crashed his car on the railroad tracks near Dorchester Avenue, and the standoff ensued. It would take the man's personal relationship with one officer to end it peacefully.

The Post and Courier reports, in part:
[The man] asked for one police officer by name.

North Charleston Deputy Chief William Barfield said he knew the man for most of his career with the Police Department.

"We had established a relationship over the years," Barfield said. "You'd lock him up, but that doesn't mean he was a bad person."

Barfield arrived at the scene and helped persuade the man to give up. ... Barfield declined to discuss the specifics of his conversation out of respect for the suspect's privacy.

The law may be rigid and cold, but I think this shows that those that enforce the law shouldn't be.

Go read the story at The Post and Courier.

The bank was at 828 Orleans Road (near the Best Buy).

Update December 30: The Post and Courier has a short story that better stitches together Monday's timeline, and has mug shots of the three men charged in the bank robbery. Go read it.

Filed in