Man charged after holding girlfriend, kids hostage in Warren

Standoff with police ends after nearly 3 hours

By Joe Gorman

and Ed Runyan


Residents of the Highland Terrace Apartments on Tuesday cheered police as a man who held three children and his girlfriend at knife point was taken away.

The man, identified as Shawn Riley, 25, was booked into the Trumbull County jail on a charge of kidnapping, said Warren police Capt. Jeff Cole.

More charges are expected after consultations with prosecutors today, Cole said.

Jacqueline Gore was one of the residents cheering on police.

“I’m very proud of what they did,” Gore said of police.

The complex is one where residents don’t want any trouble, she said. Highland Terrace is off Highland Avenue Southeast.

“We don’t want that in our neighborhood,” she said.

Cole said Riley surrendered after almost three hours of negotiations with the Mahoning Valley Crisis Response Team, who rushed negotiators and a SWAT team to the complex.

Riley gave up just after 8 p.m. Tuesday.

The woman held by Riley was wrapped in a blanket and taken by paramedics to a local hospital to be treated for bruises to her face, Cole said. Cole said an assault preceded the standoff.

The children came out first, followed by the woman a short time later. Cole said police did not know Tuesday if the children were Riley’s or someone else’s.

The children were fed Happy Meals in the CRT command center, then were released to relatives, Cole said.

Residents were glued to their porches or lawns to watch police, only receding when the complex was hit twice by moderate rain. But as soon as the rain ended, residents were back watching the standoff.

Warren Mayor Doug Franklin, who was close to the scene as the man gave himself up, started his remarks by saying, “Great job by all of the law enforcement,” then he commended Warren Police Department’s command staff and officer Brian Martinek for serving as hostage negotiator.

“Nobody hurt. Everybody is safe,” the mayor said, commending Martinek for his work.

“We were fortunate this was resolved without use of force, basically. Thank God he is in custody,” he said of the suspect. “This was a successful resolution to a volatile situation.”

When the situation was over, a woman started a chorus of cheers for their work.

“Good job, cops,” she said. “Way to go, officers. Way to go,” someone yelled. There was a big cheer as police vehicles started to pull out of the area a short time later.