Flames engulfed a balcony in the St. Johns apartment building the suspect was said to be barricaded in. Firefighters put out the fire after about 20 minutes.

PORTLAND, Ore. — A man is in custody after police said he fired gunshots in a North Portland neighborhood and barricaded himself in an apartment building where flames later poured from the balcony of one unit.

According to a Portland police statement, officers first responded just after 1:30 p.m. to an apartment building in St. Johns near Cathedral Park after getting calls about a man in the midst of a mental health crisis throwing things from the balcony of his 8th-floor unit.

Responding officers went inside the Schrunk Riverview Tower apartment building at North Syracuse Street and Baltimore Avenue and knocked on the man’s door. Police said the man answered the door holding a rifle, then closed the door again.

As the officers fell back and called for support, the suspect reportedly began firing off a gun inside of his apartment around 2:10 p.m. Another officer saw the man come out on his north-facing balcony with the rifle.

“Officers believed that this situation was an extreme public safety concern as it was an armed subject barricaded in an elevated apartment firing a rifle,” the Portland Police Bureau said. “Officers began closing streets in the area, restricting pedestrian and vehicular traffic.”

Police surrounded the building and cautioned neighbors to shelter in place within a four-block radius using emergency alerts. Meanwhile, the sound of gunfire continued to emanate from inside of the apartment, and PPB said the suspect emerged onto the balcony with the gun multiple times.

Portland’s Special Emergency Reaction Team (SERT) and the Crisis Negotiation Team (CNT) responded to the area, evacuating two other units. Officers were seen wearing tactical gear, deploying robots and flying a drone overhead.

The standoff throughout Friday afternoon, with police saying that there remained “an active danger to the public.”

Around 4:45 p.m., flames became visible on the balcony and rapidly spread, with thick black smoke pouring out above. PPB said that the suspect had been lighting things on fire.

PPB said that officers “loud-hailed” the suspect from the inside hallway as the flames began to spread. He came out and was taken into custody just before 5 p.m. By that time, police said, flames had engulfed the balcony and started to spread inside the unit.

Firefighters responded and began attacking the flames within the unit as police worked to evacuate more people from the building.

So far, police have said that no one was harmed as a result of the incident, though one resident was taken to the hospital for a “medical issue” during the evacuation.

Portland Fire & Rescue successfully knocked down the flames. Beyond fire damage to the suspect’s unit, PPB noted smoke and water damage to multiple other units. Residents of Schrunk Riverview Tower in undamaged units were allowed back in by roughly 5:30 p.m.

The suspect was initially taken to the hospital as a precaution, but had no reported injuries. PPB said he is being detained pending further investigation. His identity has not yet been released.

North Ivanhoe Street was closed between North Philadelphia Avenue to North St. Louis Avenue into Friday evening and has since reopened.

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