California standoff ends after police use robot to deliver vape pen to suspect

An hours-long standoff in Novato, California came to a peaceful end yesterday when police officers used a police robot to deliver a vape pen to the suspect, who had threatened to burn down a gas station, reports the Sacramento Bee and Marin Independent Journal (via Gizmodo).

The incident occurred on Saturday morning when the suspect, Juan Roman, became upset with a gas station manager over an issue with the pump. After arguing with employees, he returned to the store with a can of gas, poured it on the floor, and attempted to light it on fire before fleeing the scene. Police caught up with Roman and cornering him at a second gas station and called for backup when they thought that they caught sight of a gun. A SWAT team and negotiators showed up, who used a police robot to deliver a phone to Roman.

According to the Sacramento Bee, negotiators spoke with Roman for six hours before he agreed to surrender, on the condition that he get some cigarettes. Police worried that he might have splashed gasoline on himself, offered an alternative: a vape pen, which they delivered with the robot. Roman then surrendered without further incident, and was arrested on charges of attempted arson and vandalism.