REHOBOTH, Mass. (WPRI) — A North Attleboro man was arrested Thursday following a tense standoff with police in Rehoboth.
After almost five hours, police were able to diffuse what they called a “dangerous situation” at the Cumberland Farms near the intersection of Routes 44 and 118.
A spokesperson for Cumberland Farms said the situation began when the suspect threatened to harm a store employee just before 7 a.m.
The suspect – identified as Benjamin Kimball – threatened to blow up the store, saying he had a bomb, and threatened responding officers, according to police.
“He had taken the cordless phone that belongs to the Cumberland Farms, had that in his hands,” said Chief James Trombetta of the Rehoboth. “He started running towards his vehicle. He told the officer to back off. He stated that he had a gun and a bomb and that he was going to blow the place up.”
As a result, all employees and customers were safely evacuated from the store and the gas pumps were turned off.
At one point, officials said Kimball tried to light up a gas hose but the pumps were already inactive.
Kimball, 38, was captured after he rammed an armored vehicle then tried to run off. Police said he was injured by a police dog during the incident.
“He jumped over into the driver’s seat, threw the car in reverse, and rammed one of the armored vehicles that was blocking his escape,” Trombetta said. “He then exited the vehicle and attempted to flee on foot.”
Police initially thought Kimball was armed during the standoff. However, they said what they thought was a gun in his waistband was actually a video game controller. No bomb was ever found either.
Police shut down the entire area to traffic while the situation remained active. The roadways have since been reopened.
A SWAT team member reported seeing what appeared to be a handgun inside Kimball’s car. The vehicle has since been searched and the scene has been cleared.
Kimball was taken to Morton Hospital to be treated for dog bites and to undergo a mental health evaluation.
According to Chief Trombetta, he has never seen anything like this in his town before.