Caption

Suspect ID’d in Liberty Twp. standoff 

Sheriff: Situation one of the longest he’s been involved in

UPDATE @ 11:34 a.m: The suspect in the Liberty Twp. standoff where a 10-year-old boy was held hostage for nearly 30 hours has been identified as 31-year-old Donald Tobias Gazaway, according to Butler County law enforcement.

According to our partners at WCPO, Gazaway was booked in Butler County Jail on charges of kidnapping, felenious assault, and inducing panic, per the online county records. 

Gazaway surrendered to police early Sunday morning. 

UPDATE @ 7:15 a.m (Jan. 14): A standoff where a 10-year-old boy was held hostage for nearly 30 hours is reportedly over.

According to our partners at WCPO, SWAT and other officials began to clear the scene at the Liberty Twp. townhomes around 6:30 a.m.

The 10-year-old boy is safe, and the suspect is in custody.

More information on the situation is expected from an official on scene shortly.

We will continue to update this story with additional details. 

ORIGINAL REPORT

A standoff involving a man who fired more than 20 rounds at law enforcement while holding a 10-year-old boy hostage in Liberty Twp. has entered its second day.

  • 10-year-old boy believed OK, not related to man
  • Boy lives at townhome where he’s held captive
  • Suspect fired more than 20 rounds in separate instances; law enforcement did not return fire
  • Sheriff to media: “It's a good sign when he's not shooting at us.”

UPDATE @ 1 a.m. (Jan. 14):

The standoff began about 1 a.m. at a townhome in the Springs at Liberty Township complex off Hamilton Mason Road in Butler County. Deputies with the agency’s SWAT team were still communicating with the suspect.

Sheriff Richard K. Jones said the situation is one of the longest in which he’s been involved.

“When we get called out to stuff like this usually we don’t expect it to be 24 hours … something like this we just do the best we can, take our time and make it happen,” Jones told our news partner WCPO-TV in Cincinnati.

The sheriff earlier said when the suspect fired shots at two separate times that law enforcement did not return fire. He said the suspect keeps the boy close at all times, but that deputies have been able to talk to the suspect and boy.

UPDATE @ 7:45 p.m.:

Managers of the Springs at Liberty Township apartments are helping residents at the portion of the complex that was evacuated find accommodations at local hotels.

They also opened the hospitality area of the front office and are offering food and drinks for the residents displaced by an ongoing standoff situation involving a 10-year-old boy held hostage.

UPDATE @ 6:50 p.m.:

There has been no change in the hostage/standoff situation in Liberty Twp.

A man is holding a 10-year-old boy who is not related to him at a Springs at Liberty Township townhome.

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The incident began around 1 a.m. following an argument. The suspect has fired rounds at law enforcement twice but no one was hit. The child is reported to be “OK,” and inside a car with the standoff suspect in the garage.

Our reporter on scene said Butler County Sheriff Richard K. Jones expressed hope it could end by dark.

Sheriff Richard K. Jones says that negotiations with a man holding a child hostage in a West Chester apartment complex are going well and he’s encouraged that there will be a peaceful resolution.

UPDATE @ 3:45 p.m.:

Butler County Sheriff Richard K. Jones recently spoke with media and our reporter who has been on the scene since this morning. Some of his quotes:

• “It's a good sign when he's not shooting at us.”

• "The little boy is OK at this point."

UPDATE @ 3:21 p.m.:

An armored vehicle has parked against the apartment where a man is holding a 10-year-old boy hostage at Springs at Liberty Twp.

It has been a little more than two hours since shots last came from the apartment, but no one was injured and there was no damage done.

Officials from multiple law enforcement agencies throughout the region are on the scene.

UPDATE @ 2:11 p.m.:

More law enforcement have arrived at the active standoff scene at which a man is holding a 10-year-old boy hostage inside an apartment at Springs at Liberty Township.

Butler County sheriff’s deputies are on scene, along with units from other area law enforcement agencies.

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UPDATE @ 1:10 p.m.:

Multiple gunshots were fired out of the apartment where a man is holding a 10-year-old boy hostage in Liberty Twp.

Nothing was struck by the shots, according to our reporter at the scene.

A view of the standoff at Springs at Liberty Township apartments as of 1:50 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 13, 2018. WAYNE BAKER / STAFF

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UPDATE @ 12:10 p.m.: 

A 10-year-old boy has been taken hostage following a disagreement Friday night at a Liberty Twp. apartment, according to officials.

The man has held the child hostage for several hours and fired rounds at officers and the department’s robot.

He has not made any demands and officials have been in contact with the child, who seems in good spirits, said Butler County Sheriff Richard K. Jones.

“The boy seems fine at this time,” Jones said.

The man apparently is not related to the child.

It is still an active situation and several residents have been evacuated. 

INITIAL REPORT

Police are on the scene of a standoff in the 7100 block of Liberty West Drive early Saturday morning, according to a report confirmed by the Butler County Sheriff’s dispatch.

MORE: Delivery of Journal-News has been delayed today

The incident is at the Springs at Liberty Township apartment and complex and began shortly after 3 a.m. Law enforcement officials at the scene said there is a child involved in the situation, but no further information on the child was immediately available.

MORE: 37 people indicted in Butler and Warren counties

According to dispatchers, no further details are being released at this time.

We will update this story when more information becomes available.

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