Mayor relives 17-hour North Providence standoff

NORTH PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WLNE) — After 17 hours barricaded inside his home, Gino Rotondo surrendered himself to authorities Thursday morning.

The town’s mayor, Charles Lombardi, was assisting most of that time.

Police responded to reports of a gunshot outside 3 Stephanie Dr. Wednesday afternoon. The call sparked hours of negotiations between the suspect and authorities.

“Street sense told me that he was just playing with us,” said Lombardi. “‘I’ll call you in an hour. You call me back in an hour.’ We call him back in an hour, don’t answer the phone. Then, all of sudden he texts us, ‘Call me.’ Then, we call him back, ‘Oh, give me another ten minutes.’ That was a frustrating part, and I just kept saying, ‘Hey, we need to wait him out.'”

The mayor told ABC 6 News that the woman who willingly stayed alongside the suspect came out of the house first Thursday morning.

He explained, “At that point in time, he’s got nothing to lose except his life. But, he’s got nothing to lose. He could’ve came to the window, broke the window, and started shooting.”

At about 8 a.m., Lombardi said the man came out of the house unarmed with his hands in the air. There were about 60 emergency personnel who assisted in the standoff.

Lombardi explained they were always planning on waiting out the suspect and not shooting, asking, “Can you put a price on someone’s life?”

The mayor said Rotondo is currently being held at the North Providence Police Department.

Categories: News, Rhode Island