A woman was taken hostage by her boyfriend in Visalia Sunday afternoon, and a standoff ensued for more than five hours.
Visalia Police Lt. Candido Alvarez says shortly before 4 p.m. in the 2000 block of Hillcrest Avenue, Jonathan Soto, 32, was involved in a disturbance with his girlfriend.
He allegedly took out what was described as a screwdriver, and the family, including kids, fled the house. However, Alvarez says Soto’s girlfriend was taken hostage and was barricaded inside the home.
A crisis negotiator and the SWAT team was called to the scene. As of 9 p.m., Soto and his girlfriend remain in the home, and she is reportedly unharmed.
A motive is unknown, Alvarez says. However, at this point, he says officials are hoping for a safe surrender.
Soto reportedly has a history of domestic violence, Alvarez adds.
It is unknown if Soto and/or his girlfriend live at the home.