Deputy standoff in Clay County

Saturday, September 23, 2006

BRAZIL -- A Clay County Sheriff's deputy was the focus of a lengthy standoff with fellow police officers Friday night.

As of midnight, Deputy John Lambert continued to hold authorities at bay at his Cloverland home west of Brazil. The situation began at 10:30 a.m. Friday when officers from the Indiana State Police and Clay County Sheriff's Department attempted to serve a warrant for domestic violence on the deputy at his home.

Putnam County Sheriff Mark Frisbie, who responded to the scene to assist with negotiations, said the deputy did fire his gun into the ground once. No one was injured.

"We first came over with negotiators," Frisbie told the BannerGraphic around 11:30 p.m. Friday, "and to help patrol their county."

As the 11 hour stand-off continued, however, Frisbie said he and his officers would pull out from the scene within the hour due to officer fatigue.

An Indiana State Police SWAT team and Clay County deputies were attempting to talk Lambert into surrendering peacefully.

Authorities closed U.S. 40 near CR 650 West in Clay County, and residents in the area were allowed to evacuate their homes.

The Brazil Times reported that students at Staunton Elementary and North Clay Middle schools were not allowed to ride the bus home Friday. They were kept at school until their parents could pick them up, said Chris McVay, a Clay Community Schools transportation department employee.

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