It was a rough day for Lake Pleasant Regional Park yesterday. Traffic was backed up for miles, as entrances were closed down after police received a call about a possibly suicidal person with a weapon near the entrance of Lake Pleasant. Facebook posts of those stuck in the traffic jam eluded to an “active shooter” being the cause of the shut down. But Peoria police tweeted that the person was “possibly suicidal and detained as well as taken to a hospital to be evaluated.”
The situation did take quite a while to resolve, and traffic was at a stand still for hours. Vehicles attempting to enter the park were able to turn around and avoid the jam, but the exit of this park was also closed, preventing anyone from leaving. It is confirmed that the person was “armed”, and thought to be suicidal. It’s unclear why Lake Pleasant was the chosen location for the disruption.
Multiple police departments were called in to try and resolve the situation without anyone getting hurt. However, the person was not detained until around 5:00 pm. Castle Hot Springs road was not re-opened until after 6:00 pm. There was eventually and emergency exit road opened for those wishing to exit Lake Pleasant Regional Park.
The Department of Public Safety, Maricopa County Sheriffs Department, and the Glendale Police Department were all on the scene trying to resolve the situation. It took a lot of assistance. Although several road way closings were in place, the armed person did not ever fire shots, as far as reports go. The man was also not reported to have suffered any injuries during the incident. Peoria police kept the public informed via their Twitter account, and urged the public to to avoid the area for everyones safety.
Lake Pleasant is a favorite destination for Phoenix locals, especially during Summer weekends. Although many people were inconvenienced, the most important thing is that nobody was hurt. Incidents like this do not always end so well. With the growing number of mass-shootings in largely populated and public areas, first responders take these calls extremely seriously. Their precautions must expect the worst case scenario, due to the possible danger of an armed individual who appears to be troubled and/or suicidal.
So far there are no follow up news reports on the well-being of the man who was detained. If you are struggling with suicide, please call the National Suicide Prevention Hotline at 800-273-8255. For the ABC15 news report of this story, please visit https://www.abc15.com/news/region-west-valley/peoria/lake-pleasant-regional-park-temporarily-closed-due-to-police-incident