LARIMER COUNTY, Colo. (KDVR) — A woman was arrested for allegedly taking a police officer’s gun, attempting to hold him hostage, and then barricading herself inside the patrol car at the Larimer County Jail.
According to the Larimer County Sheriff’s Office, the incident occurred just after 4 p.m. Sunday when Fort Collins Police Services responded to a shoplifting incident at a store in southeast Fort Collins.
Officers located the suspect, who was identified as 38-year-old Patricia Rodriguez of Greeley. She was arrested for the alleged shoplifting and taken to the Larimer County Jail.
Once the officer and Rodriguez entered the vehicle bay of the jail, the arresting officer secured his weapon as required before entering the booking area.
LCSO said the officer tried to remove Rodriguez from the car and found she had slipped out of her handcuffs, manipulated the storage safety measures and managed to gain access to the officer’s firearm.
“[The officer] came around to get her out, she pointed the weapon at him, is what we were told and he was thankfully able to flee back into the secure area of the jail. But she had control of the car with the car keys and the weapon for about 2.5 hours,” Larimer County Sheriff John Feyen told FOX31.
At that point, LCSO said Rodriguez attempted to take the officer hostage at gunpoint, but the officer was able to escape the sally port. Rodriguez barricaded herself inside the police vehicle.
Multiple law enforcement agencies responded to the jail including the Fort Collins SWAT team and crisis negotiators.
According to LCSO, law enforcement used tear gas and moved in with large vehicles to pin Rodriguez to get her to surrender. When she exited the vehicle around 7:30 p.m. she was arrested.
Rodriguez was taken into custody and booked on the following charges:
- First-degree assault
- First-degree aggravated robbery
- Attempted second-degree kidnapping
- Criminal mischief between $5,000-$19,999
- Disarming a peace officer
- Resisting arrest
“This suspect showed a disturbing disregard for the lives of first responders, the inmates in our care, and our community,” Feyen said in an emailed statement. “I’m extremely grateful to everyone who worked together to safely resolve this incident and minimize disruption to jail operations. Challenging situations like this demonstrate the importance of top-notch training and strong relationships.”
Rodriguez also had three active warrants at the time of her arrest.
An investigation is also underway to determine how she escaped from the handcuffs and got hold of the gun.