- The Enterprise
- The Recorder
A Charlotte Hall man has been charged with multiple counts of assault and reckless endangerment following a Monday night standoff with police in which he held his parents hostage inside their garage with an unloaded shotgun.
Steven Michael Scott Jr., 22, has been ordered held without bail on counts of reckless endangerment, assault, resisting arrest and failing to obey a lawful order after officers had to deploy a police dog to help subdue him.
Charles County sheriff's officers arrived at the home to find the hostage situation around 9:30 p.m. and surrounded the home, in the 14200 block of Enchanted Place in Charlotte Hall, according to charging papers.
Upon approaching the house, officers could see through a window that three people were inside the garage, including Scott, the papers state.
Officers saw Scott yelling at the other two people — later identified as his mother and father — and heard the sound of a shotgun’s pump action from inside the garage, court records state.
Cpl. John Freeman walked up to the garage door with his police dog, at which point Scott was seen raising the shotgun toward his parents, the records state.
Scott then turned his attention toward Freeman and began yelling at him. Freeman ordered Scott to drop the shotgun, but Scott refused, according to charging documents.
Officer M. Armstrong approached an adjacent door into the garage and ordered Scott’s parents to get out, but they didn’t comply, the documents state.
Armstrong entered the garage through an open side door, physically removed Scott’s father and repeatedly ordered Scott to drop the shotgun. Meanwhile, Scott’s mother pleaded with her son to drop the weapon, the papers state.
Scott refused and at one point made his way into the garage’s stairwell and asked to use a cell phone.
As the officers continued negotiating with Scott, Freeman let his police dog off its leash, the records state. The dog went into the stairwell with Scott, but did not immediately subdue him.
Armstrong entered the bottom of the stairwell and continued ordering Scott to drop the weapon. Armstrong was able to grab the shotgun, at which point Freeman ordered the canine to take Scott down, the documents state.
The dog bit Scott in the lower right leg, and the officers took him into custody after a brief struggle, according to court papers.
Officers found three 12-gauge shotgun shells and a three-page suicide note in his pockets, the records state.
In the letter, Scott apologized to his parents for his actions and concluded the note by writing, “suicide by cop,” the papers state.
The shotgun, a 12-gauge pump-action model manufactured by OF Mossberg & Sons, was not loaded, the documents state.
Scott's parents told investigators that their son retrieved the shotgun and went to the garage after getting into an argument with his father.
Scott was taken to Civista Medical Center in La Plata to be checked for injuries from the dog bite before being taken to the county jail.