Iron Gate standoff ends in peace, thanks to deputy's negotiation skills

IRON GATE, Va. (WDBJ7) - Daylight showed a little more of what happened Wednesday night, when a distraught Iron Gate man began shooting out his windows.

Officers had to evacuate neighbors but eventually took Marshall Meadows into custody without incident.

"When I got here I heard at least eight or nine gunshots from the time I got here until the incident was concluded," said Deputy Matthew Bowser.

Bowser arrived with a swarm of officers after an active shooter call went out.

"Just walking around the house during the daylight you can notice that just about every window that's visible has some sort of exit hole and glass outside on the ground," he said, pointing to the shattered windows.

While the distraught suspect fired his gun officers were evacuating neighbors or telling them to shelter in place.

"You know I got 1, 2, 3 pellet holes right here," said neighbor Tommy Persinger. "Here's another pellet hole, here's another one down here in the lattice work. One came through the window."

Homes and cars were hit.
"It scared me that bad because it was loud," said another neighbor.

But not a single person was injured.

"Well see, it's scary because you don't think that it could happen somewhere like here," he said.

The peaceful resolution was thanks in part to a high school connection.

"I told him we had some people outside that needed to talk to him. He said well, 'I'm not gonna hurt anybody,'" explained Captain Stephen Thrasher.

Thrasher talked to the suspect, who he said he's known since high school, and coaxed him out of the house.

"It's relief to the 23rd power. No one was hurt," he said. "No one was hurt, And the sick feeling in your stomach starts to go away."

That feeling subsided for Bowser, too.

"When your kids text you, 'Daddy are you ok?' It gets hard," he said.

It was a hard night's work, ending in a day of relief.

"We all sign onto this job knowing that when we leave the house we may not return," he said. "So you know in cases like this you may wanna give them an extra hug, tell your wife and kids you love them and give them one extra squeeze."