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Man charged with kidnapping after barricading himself in LoDo restaurant

19th Street was closed from Wewatta Street to Chestnut Place.

DENVER — A man is facing kidnapping charges after police said he walked into a restaurant in downtown Denver with a rifle and barricaded himself inside Sunday night into Monday morning.

According to a probable cause (PC) statement, 46-year-old Justin McBride went inside the Pig & Sprout Restaurant at 19th Street and Chestnut Place carrying a case at about 8:30 p.m. Sunday.

McBride went to the bar and opened the case, pulling out a rifle, the PC statement says.

Pig & Sprout's restaurant manager yelled for customers to leave once he saw the gun, according to police.

As people were running from the restaurant, McBride went to the upstairs portion of the restaurant, police said.

Staff and customers in the upstairs area hid in the employees' locker room, while McBride ate food and drank liquor that he didn't pay for, the PC statement says.

McBride then tried to get into the locker room where people were hiding, police said. 

Police said McBride was holding the rifle with its muzzle pointing first.

The people hiding in the locker room pushed the door closed and then started putting items in front of the door to keep McBride from coming in, the PC statement says.

McBride tried opening the locker room door a second time, police said. 

After realizing the locker room was occupied, McBride put restaurant furniture in front of the door, police said.

The Denver Police Department (DPD) crisis intervention and SWAT teams responded to the scene.

McBride found a number of cell phones that restaurant-goers left behind and used them to talk to hostage negotiators, police said.

The PC statement says McBride refused to cooperate with negotiators' commands.

After more attempts to get McBride to surrender, the SWAT team went into the restaurant on the second floor and took him into custody just before 1:30 a.m. Monday, police said.

On Friday, the Denver District Attorney's Office announced that McBride has been charged with:

  • One second degree kidnapping (F2)
  • One count of second degree kidnapping (F3)
  • Aggravated robbery (F3)
  • Failure to leave premises (F4)
  • Six counts of menacing (F5)
  • Six counts of false imprisonment (M2) 
  • Two counts of the sentencing enhancing crime of violence 

Andy Ganick, owner of The Pig & The Sprout, provided the following statement to 9NEWS regarding the situation:

"At this time, our immediate concerns are for the well-being and safety of our staff and guests and to support them through this difficult time. We are appreciative of the professionalism and swift action of the Denver Police Department to mitigate the situation and manage the ongoing investigation. As a family-owned and operated restaurant, we take great pride in all that we do to provide a warm, welcoming place for our staff, guests, and community. We look forward to moving on from this incident and not letting this rare moment define us and what we’ve built together.”

McBride has a second advisement hearing on Oct. 19.

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