Escaped inmate dead after hostage situation

5:47 AM, Jul 14, 2012   |    comments
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The Weld County Sheriff's Office says 32-year-old Raul Alaniz pulled a gun on himself as deputies and the Greeley SWAT team closed in on a home he barricaded himself in.

Alazniz was holding a Greeley homeowner hostage. The hostage was freed unharmed.

Weld County sheriff's spokesman Tim Schwartz says Alaniz was taken from jail to North Colorado Medical Center Friday after Alaniz complained of blood in his urine.

Schwartz says Alaniz assaulted a deputy, stole the deputy's gun and fled. The deputy suffered minor injuries.

The Hospital immediately went on lockdown after the incident.

"It's a no win situation," said Sue Frederickson, who was visiting her mother in the hospital. "It happens all the time. Unfortunately it happened here."

Frederickson was asked to stay inside the hospital when it went under lockdown.

"It caused quite the commotion," she said.

Authorities sealed off the area and placed three schools near the hospital on lockdown: Greeley Central High School, Heath Middle School and Maplewood Elementary School. That lockdown has since been lifted.

Schwartz says Alaniz attempted but failed to carjack a vehicle and then broke into the house and took a hostage.

Deputies rescued the hostage but Schwartz says he doesn't know the details.

Schwartz says officers heard at least one gunshot and found Alaniz dead inside. Schwartz says no officers fired their weapons.

According to state records, Alazniz had a lengthy criminal history dating back to his 18th birthday.

He was arrested Thursday by Greeley Police on suspicion of second degree burglary, two counts of second degree assault, a parole violation and fraud - all felonies.

He was also facing a misdemeanor charge of resisting an officer and felony bribery. Those charges date from an incident Thursday.

He was also being held on suspicion of felony burglary and felony car theft - both from a July 3rd incident.

Associated Press contributed to this story

(KUSA-TV © 2012 Multimedia Holdings Corporation)

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