A man who died during a lengthy standoff with police in El Sobrante over the weekend was shot by police but appears to have died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound, Contra Costa County sheriff’s spokesman Jimmy Lee said today. The incident began at about 7:15 p.m. Saturday at a restaurant in the 4700 block of Appian Way in unincorporated El Sobrante, Lee said. Deputies responded to the restaurant after receiving a report of a domestic battery, but the suspect, his wife and their three children left the restaurant before they got there.
Deputies located the suspect, 43-year-old Andrew Harper, at an apartment in the 4300 block of San Pablo Dam Road, also in El Sobrante, where they discovered that he had barricaded himself in a bedroom with a gun, according to the sheriff’s office. Nearby residents were warned to shelter in place while police set up a perimeter and attempted to negotiate with Harper, Lee said. At some point during the standoff, Harper allowed the three children to leave the apartment unharmed, Lee said. He did not have information about where Harper’s wife was during the incident.
At some point during negotiations, Harper allegedly pointed his gun toward officers and a Richmond police officer shot him, Lee said. He apparently survived the gunshots from the officer, but later shot himself in the chest, Lee said. A SWAT team entered the home at about 3:15 a.m. Sunday and found Harper dead. An autopsy conducted Tuesday found that he died of multiple gunshot wounds to the torso, but the shot that killed him is believed to be his own, Lee said.
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