A nearly seven-hour standoff between a transient and Santa Barbara police ended peacefully at about 1 a.m. Saturday.
The incident began at 5:53 Friday afternoon, when Santa Barbara resident 51-year-old Barry John McQueeny allegedly pulled a gun on an occupant of the Adobe Motel on Haley Street and then threatened the man. When the victim contacted the police, McQueeny, who was also staying at the Adobe, had retreated to his room alone.
Police tried to draw McQueeny out of his room, but he refused. When McQueeny continued to resist, officers called their S.W.A.T. team and crisis negotiators. Negotiators spoke with McQueeny for nearly six hours. When this also failed, the S.W.A.T. team launched tear gas canisters into the room. SB Police Sgt. John Corry said McQueeny fled the room in about 10 seconds.
Police promptly arrested McQueeny for brandishing a firearm and making terrorist threats. However, a search of his room revealed that his gun was only a pellet gun.
“It was convincing enough for the victim,” Corry said. “Just looking at it, it looked like a genuine handgun.”
McQueeny was held for $20,000 bail.