Police Standoff on Jefferson Park Ave. Ends With Suspect Bryan Silva's Surrender
On January 3, 2016, Bryan Silva, the suspect involved in a standoff on Jefferson Park Avenue lasting nearly 3 hours, surrendered to Charlottesville police.
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) - An arrest ended a standoff with police in Charlottesville that lasted for hours after a man barricaded himself inside his home Sunday. Now the man, identified as 25-year-old Bryan Silva, is behind bars.
The standoff began just before noon at a home in the 2500 block of Jefferson Park Avenue, near the Fry's Spring Beach Club. Silva surrendered a little after 3 p.m. but it all started with a call to police before dawn.
Investigators said that call came from a neighbor, after Silva's 17-year-old girlfriend escaped the house and called for help. Police say Silva threatened her with a gun and warned he'd shoot police.
"We got a call here this morning, shortly after 6 o’clock, for a disturbance, it was a domestic disturbance. A female said she was threatened with a firearm," said Charlottesville Police Chief Tim Longo.
Police say Silva refused to come out of the house and barricaded himself inside when officers arrived with warrants for abduction and possession of a firearm.
The police tactical team and crisis negotiation team was dispatched, creating quite a scene in the neighborhood of family homes and churches. Streets around the Silva’s home were also blocked off.
“Obviously it's a tactical situation, we have a pretty large perimeter set up. It’s a residential community, a beautiful day. There were a number of churches that were letting out,” stated Longo.
For several hours Sunday afternoon, Charlottesville emergency crews encouraged neighbors to shelter in place but not everyone did.
People trickled in and out, many of them living in nearby neighborhoods. They say they were on edge, nervous, and a little bit curious as to what's going on.
Many watched on their smartphones as Silva posted to Facebook during the barricade.
He uploaded a screenshot of a chat in which he wrote, "She betrayed me". Silva also posted a video showing police surrounding his home.
A second video, posted just before he surrendered to police, shows Silva yelling, dancing, and drinking what appears to be vodka.
Some neighbors say they weren't surprised.
“I always thought that house was always kind of a little bit sketchy and we've seen cops there before. We've seen things go on there,” said Leslie Tanner, neighbor.
Around 3 p.m., police launched chemical irritant into the house. Minutes later, Silva emerged in handcuffs.
No one was injured in the standoff but police say they found a handgun in Silva’s home.
He is charged with abduction and possession of a firearm by a convicted felon. He is being held at the Albemarle-Charlottesville Regional Jail, awaiting a bond hearing Monday.
In 2014, BuzzFeed, a pop culture website, posted an article titled "Meet Bryan Silva, the Kid Who Gained 400,000 Followers on Vine for Making Weird Gun Noises.” The 6-second social media video has been watched more than 18 million times.
Silva appeared on Comedy Central's “Tosh.0” to talk about his web celebrity status and troubled past.
NBC29 found Silva faces a March 3 trial date in Orange County. Online court records show he was arrested in March 2015 on charges of destruction of property and marijuana possession.