Terre Haute Police say they got a call that a 20-year-old man, Thadias “Jack” Carpenter, had pulled a weapon on another man inside a home at 527 S. 19th St. Wednesday evening.
It was also reported to police, at that time, that Carpenter said he was willing to shoot an officer before he would go back to jail. Because of that threat, a Special Response Team was on the scene. After three hours and some negotiations with Carpenter by officers via cell phone, he finally did cooperate with police. From the back exit of the home, Carpenter surrendered with no further incident before midnight. No weapons were found on his person at the time of arrest, as he was instructed to come out with hands up and no weapons.
“At approximately 8:30 this evening, we received a report from a man claiming he’d had a gun pulled on him inside the residence at 527 S. 19th St.,” Assistant Police Chief Shawn Keen informed reporters on the scene. “The person who he indicated pulled a weapon on him subsequently had an active warrant for his arrest and over the past 24 hours,we've received numerous reports from individuals that that person had made comments that he’d shoot police before he’d go back to jail.”
When asked about potential additional charges from the ordeal, Keen explained that further information was limited with the investigation still underway. The officers made a search of the residence based on initial information to make sure no other individuals were inside. He said that it is unclear if there was, in fact, a weapon found on the property at the time of the report.
“Like I said, he does have an active warrant. It’s a probation violation warrant and the investigators are speaking to him now, so we’ll look into tonight’s events and see if other charges are applicable,” Keen said.
A large crowd of onlookers had begun congregating at the scene that looked like one would only see in an action movie. They stood by on lawns near the alley behind carpenter’s residence, which was also blocked off to the public, and on curbs along Crawford Street. At one point, as many as hundred spectators were standing at the intersection of 19th and Crawford Streets.
As events reached the two-hour mark of the standoff, one Red Cross Volunteer, Pam Nobel, approached officers,offering them a cooler stocked with cold beverages. She noted that she has recently moved to the area from the state of Washington. They showed appreciation for the gift.
When the police tape was finally taken down and the crowd started to thin, Barbara Perry seemed a little perplexed as she reflected on the last time she visited her son, just before this arrest.
Perry said that Detective Ed Thompkins, of the Terre Haute Police Department, was on the porch as she was coming out of the residence. She had just taken her son a plate of food around 8 p.m.
She said Jack, who is on probation, “had been drinking Crisp Apple Orchard Beer” and appeared tipsy as she locked the door behind her that last visit, before the block got closed off for police activity surrounding the case.
The next thing she knew, she was being patted down for a weapons check and then several police swarmed in the neighborhood.
She was placed in a squad car for her protection until the location was deemed safe for her to stand with family and friends who were waiting with the crowd.
Perry said she had no idea, at that time, that police were tipped off that Carpenter had earlier had a threatened another man in the residence. He also allegedly threatened to “kill a cop before he’d go back to jail.”
She said she will talk to her son soon to hear his side of the story.
Lucy Perry can be reached at Lp1971@aol.com
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