Man barricaded inside home near Greeley broke gas line, set couch on fire

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GREELEY, Colo. -- A suspect wanted on charges of second-degree kidnapping, sex assault, assault, false imprisonment is in custody after a barricade situation on Saturday night, the Greeley Police Department said.

About 6:15 p.m. Anthony Griego, barricaded himself inside a home in Garden City, just outside of Greeley.

Police said he broke a gas line from a water heater and set a couch on fire.

Firefighters had to stand back while a SWAT team tried to convince Griego to surrender.

“It is odd for us to be dealing with people barricaded in a house, for sure,” Greeley Battalion Chief Kevin Mahoney said. “We don’t typically handle bad guys like that. We let law enforcement do that.”

After about 20 minutes, police say Griego surrendered. Cellphone video showed him crying as he backed away from the house.

Firefighters moved in quickly, extinguishing several small fires.

“We knew there was no more danger as far as the bad guy goes, but the place was on fire, so we went in and put the fire out,” Mahoney said.

Neighbors like Alex Gomez watched from across Seventh Avenue. It was quite a scene for Garden City, a town of about 400 people.

“All the cops had their weapons and assault rifles out, everything was out, it was crazy,” Gomez said. “We saw the smoke, I mean the smoke was crazy, but we didn’t know it was a fire, that’s the thing.”

Gomez said neighbors initially thought police were trying to use smoke to flush out Griego. When they saw firefighters move in, they realized it was a fire.

Griego was taken to a hospital for burns and smoke inhalation. There were no other injuries.

On Sunday morning, firefighters returned to the home to put out another fire that had flared up in the attic.

“We’ll be talking about this one for a little bit at work,” Gomez said.

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