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Officers arrest man after standoff in central Grand Forks

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Grand Forks Police arrested 36-year-old Samuel Nelson of Grand Forks after a several-hour standoff in the 1100 block of 14th Ave. S. Monday. photo by Eric Hylden/Grand Forks Herald2 / 6
A SWAT team officer works from an armored vehicle during Monday's standoff. photo by Eric Hylden/Grand Forks Herald3 / 6
Grand Forks police and sheriff's deputies respond to Monday's standoff in the 1100 block of 14th Avenue South. photo by Eric Hylden/Grand Forks Herald4 / 6
Grand Forks Herald photo by Kirsten Stromsodt.5 / 6
Grand Forks Herald photo by Kirsten Stromsodt.6 / 6

A nearly five-hour standoff between Grand Forks police and a man who was believed to be armed in an apartment building in central Grand Forks ended peacefully Monday.

At about 12:45 p.m. Grand Forks police officers spotted 36-year-old Samuel Nelson, who had five active warrants in the city. When officers attempted to apprehend Nelson, who was believed to be armed, he fled police and entered an apartment complex in the 1100 block of 14th Avenue South.

Officers then established a perimeter and isolated the building and immediate area for public safety purposes. Police also urged residents to stay away from the area or stay inside if they were in the vicinity Monday afternoon.

Teams of the Grand Forks Regional Special Operations Group were activated, including the SWAT team, Crisis Negotiations and the Bomb Squad. Altru Ambulance and the Grand Forks Fire Department also assisted.

After the necessary equipment arrived, officers systematically searched the building for Nelson. They found him in the building and persuaded him to surrender to officers.

The standoff ended about 5:30 p.m.

Nelson, a Grand Forks resident, was medically evaluated by paramedics on scene and was subsequently transported to the Grand Forks County Correctional Center.

Lt. Derik Zimmel, with the Grand Forks Police Department, said it was a "collaborative effort" between multiple specialized agencies to get Nelson out. He added that getting the individual out safely and without anyone getting hurt is always the ultimate goal.

In addition to five local warrants for Nelson’s arrest, additional criminal charges pertaining to the standoff are under consideration.

Court records show that Nelson was charged with multiple drug-related crimes in February, including two counts of possession of drug paraphernalia, possession of a controlled substance-meth, possession of a controlled substance-marijuana.

Anyone with additional information about the incident is asked to contact Grand Forks Police. People can call 701-787-800, submit a tip via the department’s Facebook page or website or through the Tip411 app.

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