Irvine police Wednesday sealed off a three-block area and evacuated 10 residences while dispatching a special negotiating team in an attempt to get a young woman who had barricaded herself in her home to surrender.
But when police finally entered the Rossano Street home of Crista Barrow, 19, they found the woman fatally wounded, apparently from a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head.
The incident began at about 3 p.m. when police entered into a 2-hour negotiating session with the distraught young woman. Officers set up an evacuation center at a nearby park for residents whose homes were near the barricaded house.
Shot Once in Temple
Irvine Police Lt. Mike White said Barrow shot herself once in the temple with a .32-caliber pistol about 5 p.m.
She died about 4 hours later at UCI Medical Center in Orange, according to a hospital official.
White said police earlier had received an urgent call from a woman representing Barrow’s psychologist. She warned officers that Barrow had a gun and was very upset.
Shortly after the incident began, White said, Barrow fired one shot into a wall of the house on the quiet residential street. Then, 2 hours into the standoff, police heard a second shot and rushed through the front door. She was found unconscious on the floor.
Paramedics treating Barrow took her by helicopter to the medical center.
“Apparently, she was upset over some kind of drug problem and was extremely agitated when our officers arrived. She told one of the officers that she had a gun and was going to commit suicide,” White said.
Barrow then showed one of the officers the gun and slammed the door in the officer’s face, White added.
“After that, we backed off and called in our negotiation team,” White said.
Police negotiators talked with Barrow through a window, attempting to get her to surrender, but she refused all attempts, according to White.
Police set up the evacuation center at Norwood Community Park, about 4 blocks away. But park recreation leaders said none of the residents opted to use the facility.