Police: Biloxi man dead after 20+ hour standoff with police
A preliminary investigation shows no shots were fired by officers during the standoff.
BILOXI, Miss. (WLOX) - A Biloxi man at the center of a nearly 24 hour standoff with police is dead. Officials say John Anthony Little, 54, shot himself Thursday afternoon inside his mother’s home on Strangi Avenue.
A preliminary investigation shows not a single shot was fired by officers during the long standoff.
Just after 1 p.m. Thursday, a SWAT team began pushing to enter the home where Little has been barricaded since Wednesday night. After shots were fired towards officers early Thursday afternoon, police began pushing closer to the house, throwing flash bangs at the residence.
Little is accused of shooting a man in the arm earlier Wednesday at Westwick Apartments on Stennis Drive. Police say he then kidnapped a woman, forcing her to drive him to the area of Pass Road and Rodenberg Avenue. Shortly after, Little was seen walking down the road near Division Street with a gun pointed to his own head.
Video shared with WLOX shows officers following Little with guns drawn, yelling at him to put the gun down. As he walked, heading towards his mother’s house on Strangi Avenue, Little’s mom was on the phone with police. After advising her to leave the home through the backdoor, she fled before her son arrived.
Once there, Little went into his mom’s house, locked the door, and fired several shots in the direction of police, said authorities. Officials made the decision at that time to secure a perimeter around the house, blocking off the nearby roads to ensure residents in the area remained safe. They then brought in police negotiators who encouraged him to turn himself in. During negotiations, Little once again fired several shots towards officers, said police.
Early Thursday afternoon, Biloxi Mayor Fofo Gilich also attempted to talk to Little, but his calls went straight to voicemail.
After more than 19 hours of the standoff, officers from Biloxi Police Department, with assistance from Gulfport Police and Harrison County Sheriff’s Department, began making a push to enter the house. They fired a flash bang in the front yard to get his attention. When that didn’t yield a response, officers opened a window and tried to get Little’s attention.
At 3:30 p.m., officers went in through the window and noticed barricades had been set up inside the house. They slowly moved to the back of the house where they found Little dead from a single, apparently self-inflicted gunshot wound.
Paramedics were called to the scene, and Little was pronounced dead.
Biloxi Police emphasized all along that they wanted a peaceful end to this situation so that no one got hurt. That’s why they said they waited before attempting any strong-arm tactics to try and get inside. Again, a preliminary investigation shows not a single shot was fired by officers during the long standoff.
“We didn’t want this to be the outcome. We’re very sorry to his family and friends,” Biloxi Police Capt. Brian Dykes.
A full investigation into the circumstances surrounding this incident is still underway.
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