Standoff at Syracuse group home ends in arrest

Police gather at the scene early Tuesday morning / photo: Jessica Cain

Syracuse Police have made an arrest after an overnight standoff at a group home on Wyoming Street.

Police tell CNY Central that around 11:00 Monday night officers were called for a report of a dispute at the Homestead Housing facility at 222 Wyoming Street, which is located near the intersection with Marcellus Street. That is just west of Downtown Syracuse.

Police say around 11:30 p.m. they came to the room of 28-year-old Evan Edwardsen, who would only open his door slightly and then tried to shut the door on them. Police say he had a grenade in his hand. The grenade was apparently real, but not live. Upon seeing the grenade, police say they backed away and called for backup.

Police talked to Edwardsen throughout the night, and say he was alone during the standoff and did not have any hostages. The rest of the group home was evacuated while police negotiated with the suspect.

Tuesday morning just before 9:00 a SWAT team moved in on the building, and about a half hour later Edwardsen was brought out of the home in handcuffs. He was hosed down by fire department crews to decontaminate him from the tear gas that police fired into the room.

The standoff lasted for approximately ten hours. Edwardsen was taken to Upstate University Hospital for a mental and physical evaluation.

Police say no charges will be filed in the case until Edwardsen's evaluation is complete. They say they do not know how the grenade got into the group home.

Central New York Services, the operator of the group home, provides services to people with mental health and substance abuse issues.

Peace, Inc says it is cancelling its programs at the Westside Family Resource Center on Wyoming Street due to the standoff.

This is the second time that Edwardsen has been involved in a standoff with police. In 2009 he was charged with menacing and criminal possession of a weapon after threatening his father with a compound bow-and-arrow. That standoff, on Carnoustie Lane in Manlius, lasted for six hours until police forced their way into the home's basement and took Edwardsen into custody.

Click on the video player to watch a news conference on the standoff with Syracuse Police Chief Frank Fowler.