SWEETWATER, Texas - A four-hour standoff between a 50-year-old Sweetwater man and police ended tragically Thursday when he exchanged gunshots with Abilene's SWAT team and was killed.
Sweetwater Police Chief Brian Frieda said tear gas was fired into Berry's home several hours after the standoff began.
"It was at that time when officers were trying to place gas into the trailer," Frieda said, "that the subject opened fire with multiple rounds at the officers."
Abilene SWAT team members returned fire, killing him, Frieda said.
Berry had barricaded himself in his trailer – located behind the old Midway Drive-in Theater near West Broadway in Sweetwater.
According to Sweetwater police, a call was received about a stolen front end loader that Berry allegedly took from a business – L.R. Sells and Sons Scrap Iron – across the street from his residence.
Police confirmed it was Berry by reviewing surveillance video. They then proceeded to try to contact him at his trailer home.
He proceeded to lock himself in his trailer after police showed up.
Beginning at 11:30 a.m. Thursday, police started to try to convince Berry to exit his trailer but were unsuccessful.
"The subject came out of the back door of the residence waving a firearm in a threatening manner," Frieda said.
Sweetwater Police then called for help from Abilene's SWAT team and bomb squad, which arrived at the scene around 1:30 p.m. Thursday.
Shots were heard from Berry's residence around 3:45 p.m. Minutes later, an ambulance arrived and took Berry to Rolling Hills Memorial Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.
Police say Berry may not have been mentally stable and that the last time he was arrested they found numerous bullets in his trailer.
According to police, Berry stole a front end loader from L.R. Sells and Sons on June 7. After that piece of equipment was damaged, he allegedly stole a bulldozer from a business called Washita.
Berry was then arrested for the thefts on June.
On Wednesday, Berry bailed out of jail in Nolan County. He had been held on $50,000 bond.
At about 1:30 a.m. Thursday, Berry allegedly stole another front end loader from L.R. Sells and Sons, police said.
This led to police being called to the scene at 10:52 a.m. Thursday.
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