Gunman at Colorado air base surrenders

AP News
Posted: Nov 22, 2011 12:15 AM
Gunman at Colorado air base surrenders

An airman at a Colorado Air Force base that controls GPS satellites surrendered to authorities Monday night after barricading himself in a building with a gun, officials said.

The man was detained by law-enforcement officials after surrendering around 8 p.m., Air Force officials said. No injuries were reported.

The airman was in a building where personnel prepare for deployments, and it was evacuated after the standoff began, said Schriever Air Force Base spokeswoman Jennifer Thibault. A negotiator and a SWAT team from the El Paso County Sheriff's Department responded at the Air Force's request, said Air Force Lt. Marie Denson.

Control rooms for GPS and other military satellites are in a separate, heavily protected inner compound surrounded by fences and staffed with armed guards.

The airman's name, rank and service history weren't immediately released.

Thibault said he is a member of the 50th Security Forces Squadron and was armed with his own handgun. Officials were investigating how he got the weapon past security and onto the base.

The gunman faces a discharge over a matter in civilian court, but no other details were available, Denson said. He is still classified as being on active duty, she said.

It wasn't known what prompted the standoff. Military officials said the man appeared suicidal, KDVR-TV in Denver reported.

The base about 60 miles south of Denver controls more than 60 military satellites.