Man arrested after four-hour standoff

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Stacy Vogel
Monday, July 20, 2009
— Janesville police took a 49-year-old man into custody Sunday afternoon after a nearly four-hour standoff that closed Center Avenue.

Ronald S. Gapski, no fixed address, was wanted in Dixon, Ill., on two counts of sexual assault to a child, according to a news release from the Janesville Police Department. Police tracked him down to a home at 2338 Center Ave., where he barricaded himself on the roof and threatened to kill himself with a butcher knife, Lt. Keith Lawver said.

"We had been looking for him a few days reference some information we had," he said.

The standoff lasted from 10:46 a.m. to 2:33 p.m. as a Janesville SWAT team tried to get Gapski to come down.

Police had to be careful to make sure Gapski didn't fall off the roof, Lawver said.

They finally arrested Gapski after releasing tear gas around the home, Lawver said.

"He dropped his knife, continued to resist a little bit but was overcome by the chemicals, and SWAT officers were able to take him in custody," he said.

A portion of Center Avenue was closed during the standoff.

The Rock County Sheriff's Office assisted the Janesville Police Department, Lawver said. No one was injured.

Police don't know if Gapski was staying in the house, which is divided into two apartments, Lawver said.

In fact, they're not even sure what community he lives in.

Gapski is under observation at the Winnebago Mental Health Institute near Oshkosh.

Lawver expected Gapski to face an extradition hearing to be sent back to Dixon, he said.

Last updated: 10:54 am Thursday, December 13, 2012

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