Alleged Burglar Perched Atop Roof in East LA Standoff Comes Down

The man came down to the ground after perching on top of a chimney

A wanted shirtless man who was surrounded sheriff's department deputies while perched on an East Los Angeles rooftop descended to the ground after a Friday morning standoff.

The standoff started about 7 a.m. in the 5300 block of Grace Place (map), just north of the 5 Freeway and east of the 710 freeway. A bail bondsman first alerted Los Angeles County sheriff's deputies to the situation.

The man, identified as 37-year-old Michael Vargas, had come down from the rooftop and was taken into custody by about 11:30 a.m.

He had attempted to elude bail bondsmen by hiding in the attic of a single-family home that belonged to his girlfriend, Vargas' uncle told NBC4. He then climbed onto the roof and became stranded while wearing only socks and shorts.

He eventually climbed down a ladder that had been placed against the home by deputies. He surrendered and was handcuffed.

Shortly after the standoff began, a "Rooftop Man" Twitter account was created with the handle @larooftopman.

"I can't stand up here all day," the account's second tweet read.

The man was wanted in connection with two burglaries, authorities said.

The incident was the second in less than 24 hours in which a wanted man engaged in a roof-related standoff.


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On Thursday, deputies in Lakewood appeared to fire tear gas into a home where a suspected car thief was hiding. He wriggled out of an attic vent half-naked and descended via a ladder after a brief standoff.

City News Service contributed to this report.

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