South Brunswick Police Arrest Gunman After Hotel Standoff



a car parked in a parking lot


© South Brunswick Police Department


SOUTH BRUNSWIC, NJ — South Brunswick Police on Monday announced they successfully arrested a gunman after a standoff at a local hotel Friday. No injuries or causalities were reported.

Police said they were called to Hotel Vicenza on Route. 1 just after 2 p.m on Friday. On arrival they found a guest, Louis Smith, 46, had pulled out a handgun after an argument with hotel staff.

Police said they set up a perimeter and attempted to make contact and deescalate the situation. According to the police, Smith repeatedly paced back and forth between the front breezeway and rear balcony of his second-floor room, while officers attempted to speak with him.

Police said Smith yelled profanities at unoccupied cars in the parking lot and at one point, began using his cellphone to videotape officers while blowing kisses.

A team of officers, Sergeant Anthony Pisano, Detective Rick Delucia, PFC Mike Leung, Officer Ryan Bartunek, Officer Kent English, and Officer Jason Stonkus approached Smith on the second floor. Police said Smith ran back into his room, locking the door.

Officers then negotiated for 30 minutes trying to get Smith to speak with them. Smith’s erratic behavior continued with him yelling about diabetes and who he was going to vote for, said police.

Officers said they made attempts to contact family members and were able to speak to a sister. At 4:45 p.m. Smith who was profusely sweating, opened the door briefly and Detective Delucia and Officer English grabbed him from the room and pulled him into the breezeway.

Smith was arrested and transported to Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital in New Brunswick for evaluation, said police. .

Detectives obtained a telephonic search warrant to search the room. Police said they found a Taurus 9MM handgun, 2 fully loaded magazines, 27 ounces of marijuana, a pair of black gloves, a black ski mask, ziplock bags, and a scale.

Smith has been charged with aggravated assault with a firearm, unlawful possession of a weapon, possession of a weapon by a convicted felon, terroristic threats, and distribution of CDS.

While awaiting evaluation in the emergency room of Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital, police said Smith began to act up, even while cuffed to his hospital bed.

According to the police, he threw urine at hospital staff. Two officers who were guarding him, moved in and Smith spit in their faces, said police.

Smith has been charged with two additional counts of aggravated assault for spitting on the officers. Both officers required medical treatment.

As of Monday afternoon, Smith remains in the emergency room at the hospital with two South Brunswick officers guarding him until he can be moved to a secure facility, said police.

Chief Raymond Hayducka praised the officers for their work.

“So often you only hear of these cases when officers are forced into a deadly situation. Here officers were confronted by a gunman who threated to harm other and was acting out. Officers used de-escalation techniques and time to safely take him into custody. This is a credit to the officers and their training,” said Hayducka.

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