First He Steals DPD Squad Car in Handcuffs. A Week Later, Late-Night Downtown Stand-Off.
A week ago Sunday, the Dallas Police Department sent word that officers had lost James Huffer Jr., who was arrested earlier that morning near Cedar Springs and the Dallas North Tollway following a family violence call. Huffer, as you'll recall, managed to steal a Dallas PD squad car while wearing handcuffs, and had remained on the loose ever since.
At first DPD thought Huffer might be with acquaintances in Arlington, where he ditched the car, or Grand Prairie. But as days went by and Huffer remained on the lam, a DPD spokesman told Unfair Park last week: "He's probably not in Texas." Which isn't to say DPD's stopped looking: Senior Corporal Kevin Janse said the department's Fugitive/Parole Squad's was out trying to find Huffer, as were covert officers. (The U.S. Marshals Service said last week it wasn't looking for Huffer ... yet.) But of course he'd gone into hiding, said Janse: "He's facing a slew of charges. He's on the lam, and they're trying like hell to find him."
This morning, it appears they did: At around 3:30 a.m., officers were called to the stretch of Main Street downtown near Iron Cactus. Officers were told: A man has a gun. The place was closed, and the employees who remained escaped; they told officers the man inside was threatening to kill himself. And so began a three-hour standoff between Huffer and the DPD, during which a parade of police officers and armored vehicles closed down Main. Around three hours later, though, that was that: The suspect, seen wandering around the restaurant's courtyard, surrendered and was taken away in handcuffs. Officially, DPD ain't confirming nothing -- not till the SWAT commander says it's Huffer. The News says it's Huffer; the AP says it may be Huffer.
Update at 8:04 a.m.: Janse confirms: It's Huffer. Says the DPD spokesman, Huffer's been taken to Parkland Hospital "since he was threatening to kill himself."
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