Man taken into custody following five hour standoff
This morning, a dangerous standoff in Jackson County shutdown parts of I-10 for nearly five hours.
This standoff started around 9 a.m. after police received a call of an 18-wheeler driving recklessly. He had been in a road rage altercation prior to crossing the state line into Mississippi.
The Jackson County Sheriff’s Office has identified the man involved in the standoff as 33-year-old Michael Mack of Baton Rouge, Louisiana.
Jackson County Sheriff’s deputies initiated the pursuit with Mack after receiving those calls of an 18-wheeler with a red cab and white trailer driving recklessly. Chase Elkins with Mississippi Highway Patrol said, “The pursuit went from near Franklin Creek on to near the 59 mile marker westbound where it came to a stop.”
Mack was armed with a machete and refused to leave the vehicle or even speak with officials on the scene. He had black blinds covering all of the windows of his truck so police could not see inside. “He didn’t speak to us out loud. He spoke with Jackson County Sheriff’s Department through the phone,” said Elkins.
A few hours into the standoff, authorities released non-lethal gas to try and smoke the man out of his truck. After five hours of negotiating, Mack got out of his truck and surrendered to police.
This standoff left frustrated drivers stuck on I-10 for five hours, but no one was injured. “We wanted to handle the situation without anybody getting injured. Sure some people’s time was messed up because of the diversion traffic. We didn’t know what was going to come of the situation so we shut down the interstate just to ensure the safety of our public here in South Mississippi. So we had troopers, sheriff’s departments, police departments, fire departments, we had a ton of agencies involved in this thing. There is no way possible that we could have done this thing by ourselves, but at the end of the day, we did exactly what we planned on doing with him surrendering without incident.”
Those who were left stuck in the traffic and watched it all go down say it was a scary situation. Grand Bay resident Tammy Ragsdale said, “Well, we’re from a little town, the whole area, and it’s pretty crazy to see something like that going on, but it was exciting, but it was scary.”
Jackson County Sheriff’s Department has charged Mack with one count of felony pursuit. Mississippi Highway Patrol, Alabama Highway Patrol, and Mobile County Sheriff’s Department may file their own charges.