NORTHFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) - Allyssa Alger's Northfield home is just a few hundred feet from the Vermont state line, and from there she says she saw and heard everything as Vermont State Police tried to get an armed man out of an apartment house.
Alger and several other Northfield residents were told to stay in their homes during the day-long standoff at Vernon Manor, an apartment house just steps from the state line in Vernon, Vermont.
She said that the worst part of the situation was being unsure of what to do next. "Not knowing If it was safe to get out of my house. What do I do?"
As police tried to get 42 year-old Thaddeus Cross to come peacefully out of the apartment house, Alger said that she heard some frightening sounds.
"It was like 10-12 shots went off, and it was quiet, and on the loudspeaker: ‘Come out with your arms raised from the door.' Then there was silence and more gunshots, what I thought were gunshots," Alger said.
But they weren't gunshots at all. Northfield Police Chief Leonard Crossland told 22News police fired tear gas canisters through the windows.
The chief said his men helped to isolate the area of what's normally a lot of cars on Route 140 leading into Vermont from western Massachusetts.
"They were there to reduce the amount of traffic that was passing through, and our role was to essentially detour traffic to eliminate a mass of people in the area," Crossland said.
Twelve hours after Cross stopped a helpful neighbor from leaving his house, Vermont state police arrested and charged him with unlawful restraint and reckless endangerment. He was scheduled for arraignment Tuesday at Windham Criminal Court in Brattleboro.