Standoff Outside Dawes County Ends After 2 Hours With No Injuries


Photo – Jeremy Anderson/Chadrad

       An incident this (Tuesday) afternoon involving a young man holding a knife and threatening to use it on himself outside the Dawes County Courthouse in Chadron ended without injuries after about 2 hours.

      Early social media accounts suggested the young man had a gun, but was in fact armed only with a knife. 

Most of the standoff occurred with him sitting on a courthouse windowsill with Sheriff Karl Dailey opposite him on a bench and quietly talking. 

      The young man grew agitated briefly a few times and spoke with his mother from a distance, but generally remained calm. He took off his shirt at one point with Sheriff Dailey handing it back to him as he gave up the knife.

     Dailey and Deputy Lee Sayloune then accompanied him into the courthouse. Afterwards, the sheriff would say only that the incident “came to a very happy and satisfactory conclusion.” 

      A number of law enforcement officers with non-lethal armament were on hand as a precaution, but a comfortable distance away to avoid spooking the young man while he was armed.  

      Sheriff’s deputies, Chadron police, and Nebraska State Patrol troopers blocked traffic around the courthouse with vehicles parked on Main Street not allowed to leave until the incident ended.

    The city sent out a text alert about 2:50 asking residents to stay away from the area and to use alternative routes to pick up students from the primary, middle, and high schools. 

    Those in the courthouse, including those in the courtroom for district court motion day, were told to use the west entrance to leave. Since the standoff posed no threat to those in the courtroom, District Judge Travis O’Gorman continued proceedings as normal. They ended shortly after the end of the incident

      No word has been released on what happened to the young man after he surrendered, but standard procedure in such incidents is to keep the individual under observation for 3 days.

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