By Diane Daily
Bloomington Police say it took a coordinated effort to apprehend the man at the center of Tuesday’s lengthy stand-off near the IU Campus. University police, the Monroe County Sheriff’s Department and the Indiana State Police were called to help the search for the suspect.
According to Captain Ryan Pedigo, the incident began with a report of a man swinging a steel rod at several people in Seminary Park. The man, 37-year-old Eli Swartzentruber then retrieved a hatchet from a nearby vehicle and went back to the park to throw the weapon at the same individuals he’d threatened earlier.
The suspect then fled the park and was seen entering a large storm drain near First and Walnut.
Once inside the drain, Swartzentruber yelled at police that he had a rifle and threatened to shoot any officers who came in after him.
Swartzentruber was taken into custody after a state police dog was sent into the sewer.
He has been charged with felony counts of Intimidation and Attempted Battery with a Deadly Weapon. Pedigo says addti0nal charges may be added.
The motive is unknown, but a Bloomington man defaced the Washington Monument earlier this week with red paint.
44-year-old Shaun Ray Deaton allegedly spray painted an obscene message on the monument. The message has since been removed.
Deaton was arrested and charged with trespassing, tampering and vandalism.
In other news today, the first weekend of fall brings the start of the Lotus World Music and Arts Festival. The festival gets underway tonight…and runs through Sunday at six different venues around Bloomington.
This is the 29th year for the festival, which attracts around 12-thousand music lovers every year.
More than 20 international artists will be featured this weekend. There will also be a Festival Arts Village, a Dance Workshop, a Local Artist Stage, interactive activities for children and lots of other offerings.
You can find complete details at lotusfest.org