Dallas SWAT standoff
DALLAS –– A six hour standoff that began after a woman reported being sexually assaulted by multiple men in an Oak Cliff apartment ended with police bursting in and finding no one inside.
Dallas police are now verifying the 25-year-old woman's story.
Law enforcement sources say the woman fled the unit in the 500 block of N. Marsalis St. to a nearby bus stop and called police at about 9:45 a.m.
Debby Hall said she encountered the victim shortly after alleged attack.
"She was severely beaten up," Hall said. "Her eye was black and her nose was broke. I was trying to do the nice thing and let her know there's a hospital over here, but she was too terrified and scared."
Hall said she helped the victim find someone with a phone so that she could call 911.
There was a possibility that a teenager is inside the apartment with the suspects. Police thought the suspects were armed and dangerous, although it turned out no one was inside.
SWAT officers were called to the complex, one of whom has a loudspeaker and demanded the men surrender.
"Do what's right. We are not going away!," the officer shouted. If they don't give themselves up, "the situation will escalate."
"Dallas police called in the SWAT team and they have since set up a perimeter and have attempted to call the suspects out of the apartment," said Sgt. Warren Mitchell, a police spokesman, in a release during the incident. "They continue to work toward a peaceful resolution."
At least 22 Dallas police vehicles were called to the location. Residents who live in the complex were told to shelter in place, however some were escorted from their homes. The Dallas Independent School District locked down Hector Garcia Elementary School and Bowie Elementary School following the SWAT response.
Two armed personnel vehicles also approached the complex and police asked all media helicopters to withdraw two miles from the apartment. Dallas Fire-Rescue engines and ambulances are on scene, although their presence appears to be more of a precaution.
An incident command post arrived about two hours after the incident began.