Mt. Vernon standoff shocks residents
(08/11/03) MOUNT VERNON - Residents who live on Hillside Avenue in Mount Vernon say they are still in shock over the nine-hour standoff that took place on their street.
At around 8 a.m. on Saturday, a typical summer day on Hillside Avenue turned into an ordeal that left residents trapped in their homes. One resident described the scene, saying there were police officers with shields and guns on the scene and snipers on the rooftops. The standoff between police and 29-year-old Justin Baynes ended after he took his own life.
Police say Baynes was arrested in June for rape, attempted rape and kidnapping after he allegedly brought a Yonkers woman to his apartment. Baynes later made bail.
Neighbors say they are surprised because they knew Baynes as someone who was soft spoken. One neighbor says he even lent Baynes money once and was paid back right away.
Baynes' family members say he had been distraught since losing his mother in February. His sister says she spoke to him the night before and he seemed fine. For now, no one is sure what made Baynes snap.