A large explosion took place in an Arlington neighborhood after a police standoff, shaking the entire neighborhood.

A duplex, where a suspect was in an ongoing incident with police, exploded in a massive fireball as police, including a SWAT armored vehicle, moved in on the home. It happened after the suspect repeatedly fired a flare gun over the nearby Fields Park.

Residents were instructed to shelter in place, and others were evacuated by police.

Arlington County Police told ARLNow that the person fired shots at officers as they tried to enter the home, moments before the explosion. The explosion was caught on video.

“As officers were attempting to execute a search warrant at the residence, the suspect discharged several rounds inside the home,” said ACPD. “Subsequently, an explosion occurred at the residence and officers continue to investigate the circumstances of the explosion.”

“I think it blew up the entire duplex,” one neighbor told ARLnow in the immediate aftermath. “I’m sure the family next door was evacuated before it blew up but they lost their home.”

The explosion happened around 8:25pm, and as of 11:30pm, crews were still working to put the fire out that had started after the explosion.

Alex Wilson, the neighbor who caught the explosion on video, said he also saw the suspect firing on the SWAT team as they tried to move inside. He said he saw at least one officer who appeared to be injured after the explosion.

Explosion in Ballston

“He was able to walk but he was like holding his head,” said Wilson.

Local officials released a statement, explaining that the whole affair began hours before the explosion happened.

A Reddit user who says they're a neighbor, karmagirl314, said she saw neighbors near the building be evacuated.

I live four doors down. I had just gotten out of the shower when the explosion happened. The power went out immediately so I had to get dressed in the dark before going outside to see what happened. They were evacuating the immediate neighbors when I came out. My upstairs neighbors ended up taking in some elderly ladies who lived across the street and two doors down. We watched the aftermath for hours and let the firefighters come in to use the restroom. Now we’re being told the neighborhood won’t get power back for days and we should find somewhere else to stay during the nights when it’s cold. That’s nothing though compared to the people who lived in the duplex who lost their home tonight.

 

“At approximately 4:45 p.m., police were dispatched to the 800 block of N. Burlington Street for the report of possible shots heard,” Arlington County Police Department spokeswoman Ashley Savage told ARLnow earlier. “The preliminary investigation indicates a suspect discharged a flare gun from his residence. No property damage or injuries have been reported.”

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