Santa Cruz County

Standoff in Watsonville-area ends in man's arrest

WATSONVILLE, Calif. - A standoff that occurred Monday afternoon ended after two hours of negotiation with a 69-year-old man holding a knife to his throat.

Santa Cruz County Sheriff's deputies responded to the 100 block of San Simeon Drive in the Watsonville area just before 5 p.m. Monday. There they found Elmer Saunier on his front porch, holding a hunting knife up to his own throat and taunting the deputies to shoot him.

Sheriff's Deputies and Watsonville Police Officers secured the perimeter and attempted to negotiate the weapon from Saunier.

After two hours of dialogue -- afraid that Saunier may harm himself -- deputies fired rubber bullets at him, rendering him incapacitated.

He was transported to the Watsonville Hospital emergency room where he was treated and released with minor injuries. He was then arrested on suspicion of brandishing a deadly weapon and resisting arrest and was booked into Santa Cruz County Jail.

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