A man shot by police died Wednesday night after a two-hour-long standoff with a Long Beach SWAT team following a report to police that he was believed to be armed and had threatened to blow up a federal building.
Long Beach City Hall went on lockdown due to the situation, Mayor Robert Garcia tweeted. Police said SWAT officers and crisis negotiators were dispatched to the 300 block in West Ocean Boulevard, where they were trying to make contact with the man since police were first called to an area nearby just before 4 p.m.
Over the course of the standoff, the man — described as white and in his 50s — was shot by police, Long Beach police Sgt. Brad Johnson said.
Authorities later confirmed he died from his injuries, saying they tried using non-lethal force to get him to put down his weapon before he was shot.
Despite reports to police the man possibly had an explosive device, no such weapon was ever found in his vehicle, authorities said.
Officers had gotten in contact with the man earlier in the standoff and "found that he was armed with a handgun," Johnson said.
"Officers are talking to the subject to put down the weapon but he is not complying," he said earlier.
Later, just around 6 p.m., Sky5 video showed the man being taken into custody by responding officers.
Just prior to the officers getting in contact with him, the man could be seen getting out of a large white van with both his arms raised, as Sky5 video showed. He was seen standing outside the vehicle for at least 20 minutes before what appeared to be SWAT officers swarmed him.
Police were first called to the area near 4th Street and Long Beach Boulevard near the federal building just before 4 p.m. They received a call from a woman saying her husband or boyfriend was armed with a gun and threatening to blow up the federal building, police said. Initially officials said he was her husband, but later said they were unsure.
The standoff was just over half a mile from that area.
As City Hall went on lockdown, employees inside tried to stay clear of windows and keep safe as police and SWAT officers tried getting the man to come out of the van peacefully.
"I’m on the ninth floor of the City Hall building," said Jennifer Carey, who works there. "My window actually faces out to Ocean Boulevard so I saw the initial motorcycle cop pull over the van and I didn't think anything of it at first."
Moments later, she said, dozens of officers arrived and she realized the situation was more serious.
"We were asked to stay in place ... stay away from the windows and stay a safe distance inside," she said.
At about 5:18 p.m., Mayor Garcia tweeted the suspect was still allegedly barricaded and police then started escorting city employees out of a building. At the time, he said "everyone is safe."
Arson and explosives investigators from the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department were also dispatched to the scene since there were reports of an explosive device of some sort possibly being involved.
Garcia first tweeted at about 4:40 p.m. that police were at the scene and said "everyone in the building is safe" while city hall went on lockdown. He also advised people stay away from the area of Magnolia Avenue and West Ocean Boulevard.
"I’m here at City Hall with the team," he wrote in the tweet.
In a later tweet, the mayor wrote that the person was in a white van that is parked in front of City Hall on Ocean Boulevard.
"The LBPD has secured the area and we are on full alert," he wrote. "Again, avoid the area please."
Johnson said Ocean Boulevard was closed both east and westbound from Magnolia to Pacific avenues.
No further information has been released.