Police use pet cat to end standoff in SF's SoMa District

A suspect who ran from a California Highway Patrol traffic stop was arrested early Wednesday evening after San Francisco police coaxed the man threatening to jump from a second-story window to safety with his pet cat, according to authorities.

The suspect was driving a white Toyota Highlander when a CHP officer pulled him over at 2:41 p.m. around the corner on Dore Street, but while the officer was taking down information, the man ran from the stop, according to CHP Officer Vu Williams.

Officers later learned that the Highlander had been reported stolen, Williams said.

The driver jumped a fence and into the two-story building on 10th Street near Harrison in San Francisco's South of Market neighborhood. He emerged from a second-story window, where he remained perched shirtless, barefoot and threatening to jump for several hours.

Police shut down 10th Street and have climbed the fire escape and tried to talk the man down, according to San Francisco police. They set up large foam mats on the ground and were pointing less than lethal projectiles at him.

Police spokeswoman Officer Grace Gatpandan said he might be in an "altered state."

A large crowd gathered in the area as the standoff continued into the evening.

At around 6 p.m., the man pulled himself back inside the building and shortly afterwards was taken away in police custody.

Shortly after the incident was resolved, Officer Gatpandan tweeted out a photo of fellow Officer Shawn Fulgado holding a cat, saying "Never underestimate the power of a owner's love for their pet #kitten! Great job #SFPD negotiations."

San Francisco Police later clarified that a family member had brought the suspect's cat to the scene in the hopes of helping officers end the standoff.

The intersection of 10th Street and Harrison was shut down for about three hours due to the incident.

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