News Column

Social Media Users Followed in Real Time How a Blogger Surrenders after Police Standoff

December 3, 2012

A blogger surrendered late Saturday to a Baltimore SWAT team, ending a standoff that scores of social media users followed in real time, police said.

Frank MacArthur, 47, was taken into custody outside his home after he refused to come out for more than 5 hours and filed frequent dispatches to followers on Twitter and his personal Internet radio station.

The Baltimore Sun said MacArthur was wanted on a warrant for probation violation stemming from a 2009 gun case and failure to appear in court.

He used the time he was barricaded in his home to lambaste the Baltimore police department and make alleged threats against officers.

MacArthur, described by the Sun as a taxi driver and local gadfly, told followers he feared police would harm him if given a chance. At one point, he engaged in a long speaker-phone debate with the incident commander over the merits of the charge and whether his alleged offenses warranted such a sizable response, telling police, "Your department has wronged me.".

He timed his surrender to afford local television stations the opportunity to carry it live on their 11 p.m. newscasts, the newspaper said.


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Source: Copyright United Press International 2012


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