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Witness: Man Pulled Gun On Bus Because He Was Running Late

By Rick Sallinger

DENVER (CBS4) - A man with a gun barricaded himself inside a Regional Transportation District bus on Tuesday afternoon. Police arrested the man a short time later.

The man pulled out what appeared to be a gun on board the bus as it was headed eastbound on West Colfax Avenue at Oak Street. The female driver of the bus immediately called police and let everyone off the bus except the man in the back.

(credit: CBS)

The bus stood parked on Colfax as Lakewood police tried to coax the man with the gun to come out announcing through a bull horn, "Put your hands up. Stop right there. Keep your hands up. Get down on your stomach. Keep your hands up."

(credit: CBS)
(credit: CBS)

To passersby It may have appeared like a high-stakes game of "Simon Says."

"Drop to your hands and get down on your stomach. Put your hands straight out in front of you on the ground," an officer ordered over the megaphone.

One witness told CBS4 the man had been complaining that he was angry because he was running late.

(credit: CBS)

"Before we got here the driver called back and said that he had fired one round off … one round do go off inside the bus," Steve Davis with the Lakewood Police Department said.

Police arrived and negotiated the surrender. Robert Preston was among those listening as police used persuasion rather than bullets.

"Promising that nothing would happen to him as long as he came off the bus and as long as he didn't threaten anybody … put down whatever weapon he did have," Preston said.

(credit: CBS)

It turns out the gun the man had was either a BB or Airsoft type of replica. No one was hurt.

Police were investigating to see if the man was intoxicated or had any obvious mental health issues.

CBS4's Rick Sallinger is a Peabody award winning reporter who has been with the station more than two decades doing hard news and investigative reporting. Follow him on Twitter @ricksallinger.

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