SWAT standoff at N.O. hotel ends with 1 dead, 1 injured

A standoff early Sunday morning between SWAT team officers and at least one armed man at the Westin Canal PlaceHotel in the Central Business District ended with one man dead and another injured, according to Officer Frank Robertson, a spokesman for the New Orleans Police Department.

Neither man was shot by police, Robertson said.

Police were called to the hotel in the 100 block of Iberville Street at about 6:20 a.m. to investigate a report of gunshots fired on the 17th floor, Robertson said. He said officers arrived on the scene within three minutes.

Two men told police they had already fled the room where the shots were fired, according to Robertson.

He said police quickly located and approached the room but were met with resistance.

“One of the men in the room pointed a gun at our officers,” Robertson said. “Our officers immediately retreated and called for SWAT.”

The entire floor was evacuated.

Officers made contact with one of the men still in the room, who told them he had been shot and another man in the room was dead, Robertson said.

Officers were on the verge of breaking into the room about 9:30 a.m. when they heard an additional gunshot, Robertson said. They then forced their way into the room.

Inside, they found one man suffering from two gunshot wounds and another man dead, apparently from a self-inflicted gunshot, according to Robertson.

Robertson said all four men were from out of town, possibly the Lafayette area.

Clay Walker, in town from Nashville, Tennessee, told WWL-TV that he and his wife were hoping for a peaceful time in the city and an early morning breakfast.

“We got a little bit more than what we expected,” he said. “Went right through the SWAT team. I just wasn’t expecting that on a Sunday morning.”