Salina Standoff Ends Peacefully

A Salina man who was making threats to ‘shoot up the building’ was taken into custody after crisis negotiators talked him out of his apartment on Thursday afternoon.

Captain Paul Forrester tells KSAL News that several tenants at the Pioneers Presidents’ Place Apartments located at 220 S. 7th became concerned after a man became violent around 11am Thursday morning.

Police say 62-year-old Merl Johnston became visibly agitated and broke the windshield on a 2014 Honda CRV in the complex’s parking lot with a bottle – then threatened to ‘blow up the building and shoot up the building’ while displaying a handgun.

Captain Forrester says Johnston became hostile when officers arrived and would not open his door.

Negotiators worked for about three hours to bring the standoff to a peaceful resolution as he surrendered at 4pm.

Police found a handgun in the apartment along with a small amount of methamphetamine and drug paraphernalia.

Johnston is now facing multiple charges of criminal threats, criminal possession of a firearm, drug possessions and criminal damage to property.

No one was injured in the incident.

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