Video shows blowtorch-wielding man in Christmas Day standoff with police
December 29, 2017 10:20 PM
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – Interstate 40 is one of New Mexico’s busiest roadways. So imagine running errands and spotting a shirtless, masked man holding a weapon on its median.
That happened near San Mateo and Carlisle on Christmas Day. APD lapel video makes it look like the man is holding a gun, but this is a different type of "firearm."
Police said he was running around the highway with a blow torch. He was eventually arrested, but as of Friday that suspect is back on the street.
“This is the Albuquerque Police Department. I need you to stop right there drop the knife, drop the blow torch,” APD officers can be heard saying in the video footage.
According to court documents, police say they received calls Christmas afternoon that someone was throwing bottles on the interstate.
The shirtless man, wearing a black cloth wrapped around his face, has been identified as 21-year-old Samuel Grossarth.
Police said he was also holding a gun in addition to the blowtorch. Court documents state he was disobeying police orders, refusing to be taken into custody peacefully.
Though it's difficult to see in the footage, APD officers said “the torch he was holding was lit and had a flame coming from it.”
Taking the man into custody wasn't easy. After a brief chase, an officer fired their Taser.
“Put your hands in the air, put your hands up,” officers can be heard yelling.
The yellow can police kick away in the lapel video is that blow torch they say had been ignited. Grossarth told police he tossed the knife he had.
The suspect has been arrested almost 10 times within the last few years, mostly for misdemeanor crimes, and has only been convicted of a few of those.
For the latest incident, he is facing aggravated assault on a peace officer.
Updated: December 29, 2017 10:20 PM
Created: December 29, 2017 09:51 PM
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