24-hour standoff ends with peaceful arrest

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A 24-hour standoff ended peacefully Tuesday when local law enforcement coaxed a man into surrendering from an apartment where he had firearms and bomb making materials.

According to a Gainesville Police Department press release, GPD received information on Monday about a man, James Galasso, “who was experiencing a mental health crisis.” The release did not disclose what kind of mental health crisis.

The report said Galasso, 52, had possession of firearms and “a potential explosive device,” leading officers to surround the building at 1101 SE 15th Street in Gainesville. The SWAT Team, Negotiations Response Team (NRT) and Alachua County Sheriff’s Office bomb team all responded to the scene.

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According to GPD, Galasso’s family members vacated the apartment for their safety, but negotiators were unable to reach Galasso inside.

“Officers remained on-scene for over 24 hours to make contact with Galasso and try to get his compliance,” the GPD release said.

James Galasso

At 11:03 a.m. Tuesday, the GPD Negotiation Response Team reached Galasso via phone. He subsequently surrendered and was placed under arrest.

“No other subjects were located inside, but firearms and bomb making materials were located inside the apartment,” GPD reported.

Galasso was charged with possession of a firearm by a convicted felon, possession of bomb making materials, and child endangerment.

“We would like to thank the members of the Alachua County Sheriff’s Office Bomb team who responded to assist with clearing the location for incendiary devices,” the GPD release said. “We would like to thank the members of the Gainesville Police Department for their proactive and diligent response in safeguarding our City. We would also like to thank the citizens of Gainesville for their patience and cooperation during this incident.”

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