NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - A standoff with the New Orleans SWAT team ended after a man barricaded inside a motel room shot himself. He later died at an area hospital, according to New Orleans police.
The incident started around 9 a.m. Wednesday at the New Orleans Inn, located in the 5000 block of Chef Menteur Highway.
Officials say that a task force was serving a warrant for murder to a man living at the location. When officers knocked on the door, police say the suspect refused to come out. Officers say he was armed with a gun.
Family members identified the armed man as Kernell Harrell, Jr., 25. They showed up not long after the standoff started and asked police to let them speak with Harrell in hopes of convincing him to give himself up.
"We control the negotiations, he requested to talk with his mother at some point, we control the negotiations so he would engage in conversations with us," Captain James Scott with NOPD said. "Generally that's not a good idea, because you don't know if he's going to be saying something, apologizing, he wanted to speak to his mother at some point, so generally you cannot control that, so you don't allow it."
Harrell was wanted for the shooting death of his girlfriend, Melissa Hunter, 23. The incident happened last week inside a residence in the 3600 block of Metropolitan Street.
No one else was inside the room. The standoff lasted more than five hours.