Bulloch County sheriff's deputies surrounded a home Monday on Highway 80 West while a man who was wanted on outstanding domestic dispute warrants barricaded himself in a home with a gun.
Calvin Dale Duke, 28, of Garden City, was wanted on warrants for aggravated assault, battery and third-degree cruelty to children regarding a Sept. 21 domestic dispute in which he allegedly choked his girlfriend and then fled, said Bulloch County Sheriff's Chief Deputy Jared Akins.
Deputies went to the home earlier in the afternoon, around lunchtime, to look for Duke, but it appeared that no one was home and the house was locked, he said.
However, when Duke's girlfriend arrived home later, she discovered differences in the way the house was secured and suspected Duke was inside. She left and called the sheriff's department, Akins said.
Deputies returned around 3 p.m. to serve the felony warrants, but Duke would not come out.
Because Duke had barricaded himself inside the house and had a powerful hunting rifle, the deputies called for backup, Akins said.
"Based on the nature of the warrants ... and the fact that Duke might be in possession of a weapon which could pierce the deputies' body armor, the patrol
deputies followed procedure and set up a perimeter around the home while calling for additional units," he said.
Additional deputies, including Tactical Apprehension and Control, or TAC, team members, arrived, along with Portal and Statesboro police officers, Georgia State Patrol troopers and state probation officers, he said.
William James Middle School officials were informed of the situation, but they were not advised to lock down the school, according to Bulloch County Schools spokesperson Hayley Greene.
Duke was contained to the house, and while some roads were blocked during the standoff, students were not in danger, and school buses delivered children home as usual, she said.
The Sheriff's Office used a Mine Resistant Ambush Protected, or MRAP, vehicle, a tank-like vehicle offered by the military for free to sheriff's departments, which was obtained by the local department from another sheriff's office in Georgia, Akins said. This enabled deputies and members of other assisting teams to approach the home safely and use a PA system to speak to Duke. The MRAP also has a spotlight to use in night-time situations, he said.
After a few hours, Duke surrendered, and deputies took him into custody. The home was cleared, and Duke was taken to the Bulloch County Jail.
He was arrested on the warrant charges stemming from the domestic dispute and will face additional charges related to Monday's standoff, Akins said.
Herald reporter Holli Deal Saxon may be reached at (912) 489-9414.