Man Who Threatened to Blow Up Long Beach Federal Building Identified

Donald McFarlane, 53, was killed by police after he allegedly pointed a handgun at SWAT officers.

Police Thursday identified the 53-year-old Oregon man shot and killed by SWAT officers in Long Beach after he claimed to have explosives in his vehicle and held them at bay for nearly two hours as Donald McFarlane.

Officers were dispatched about 3:55 p.m. Wednesday to the area of Long Beach Boulevard and Fourth Street to investigate a report of "a hysterical female" who stated that her husband was armed with a gun and was in a white Chevrolet van "threatening to blow up the Federal Building."

"Officers then responded to her location, as well as to Ocean Boulevard in the area of the Federal Building," according to a police statement.

Officers located the van parked in the 300 block of Ocean Boulevard, a half block east of the Federal Building, but upon their arrival the van started to pull away from the curb.

The driver stopped when officers turned on their emergency lights to conduct a traffic stop and when he was contacted police saw he was armed with a handgun as he stepped out of the van.

"He stood outside the vehicle, but remained near the van's open door," police said. "Officers started talking to the subject and directed him to put down the handgun, but he refused to comply with their orders and told them he had explosives in the van."

Streets were blocked off to keep the public out of the area and a SWAT team and crisis negotiators were summoned to the scene, police said.

"Due to the proximity of the suspect's vehicle to the Civic Center, City Hall employees were evacuated from the building, and nearby construction workers and civilians were advised to leave the area," police said.

After nearly two hours of trying to get the man to surrender without further incident, the suspect refused to drop the gun, police said.

"Based on the suspect's statement that he had explosives in the van, his continued refusal to drop his gun, and the easy access to the inside of the van, a tactical plan was put into place.

"At approximately 6 p.m., SWAT's tactical plan was initiated based on the suspect's demeanor and movements," police said.

At that point, SWAT and assisting patrol officers used 40mm rubber baton rounds and gas in an attempt to subdue the suspect. A police dog was also deployed at some point.

When the man allegedly pointed the handgun at SWAT officers, an officer-involved shooting occurred.

McFarlane was taken to a hospital, where he was later pronounced dead, police said.

No officers or civilians were injured.

It's unclear what McFarlane's motives were.

A sheriff's bomb squad found no explosives inside the van.

"Follow-up investigations found that the suspect was linked to two additional locations and vehicles," one in the 600 block of Elm Avenue in Long Beach and the other in the 18000 block of Tulsa Street in Granada Hills.

No explosives were found at either location.

Copyright CNS - City News Service
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