There are some people who can’t stand Christmas songs at all and they hate that they end up being played repeatedly during the months of November and December. Some believe that they’re overplayed and make people angry, but festive music certainly has a way of calming the nerves of others. It’s really hard to argue with the fact that a recent armed standoff came to an end after a SWAT member agreed to sing “White Christmas” to the armed man.
As reported by the Associated Press, a very tense and long standoff took place on Christmas Day. Around 9 p.m. on the holiday, police responded to a call placed by a concerned family member who asked them to go check on 34-year-old Nathaniel Lewis.
Lewis, of Chester County, Pennsylvania, was reportedly “behaving erratically” and was also in the “process of separating from his wife.” Police began collecting information on Lewis before and after arriving at Lewis’s home, and that was when they learned something disturbing.
Police learned that not only was Lewis a member of the National Guard but he was also armed. That was when SWAT was called in and they began negotiating with the man before he started firing at police and around the neighborhood.
Shots continued to ring out on Christmas night as police returned fire and some of Lewis’s shots hit a parked car and a neighbor’s house. Eventually, it took the spirit and power of Christmas to bring the standoff to an end.
Crisis negotiator sings "White Christmas" to end 9-hour SWAT standoff https://t.co/upkdXKwVa7— NBC New York (@NBCNewYork) December 27, 2018
After a standoff which lasted close to 10 hours, the SWAT negotiator found a way to get Lewis to surrender around 6 a.m. Chester County District Attorney Tom Hogan wrote on his personal Facebook page that it took the negotiator’s rendition of “White Christmas” to bring peace on the holiday.
“Over a long and cold night, they kept negotiating with the man, who eventually started shooting at the police and around the neighborhood. A SWAT negotiator finally talked him into surrendering at 6:00 a.m. this morning by singing a Christmas carol for him. You can’t make this stuff up.”
Lewis actually demanded that the SWAT team sing “White Christmas” to him and after the negotiator finished, the man surrendered.
Hogan wrote that he took Christmas cookies over to the cold and tired SWAT members, who were all in good spirits. After eating the cookies, they “made fun of each other” and went home to be with their families.
Nathaniel Lewis is facing numerous counts including attempted homicide, aggravated assault, and other related charges. He is being held without bail in the Chester County Prison in Pennsylvania, and it isn’t yet known if he has an attorney. Hogan said that the SWAT team singing “White Christmas” to end this dangerous standoff was about as close to a “Christmas miracle” as one could get.