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Man battles police siege with Facebook

'Homie' outs SWAT tactics

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Local US police are deciding whether to charge the friends of a suspect for Facebooking with him during an armed siege.

Utah resident Jason Valdez, 38, was reportedly holding a hostage during an 16-hour, overnight stand-off with police and SWAT teams. He took time out, however, to keep his friends and family up to date on proceedings via Facebook, authorities said.

Some Facebookers pleaded with Valdez to "do the right thing", but one got a little more tactical, warning him that the cops had a "gunner in the bushes. Stay low."

"Thank you homie," Valdez is said to have replied. "Good looking out."

Valdez was holding his hostage in the room of a motel called the Western Colony Inn in Ogden, Utah.

SWAT officers eventually stormed Valdez's room in the early morning and the suspect was taken into custody. According to local media, police believe the friend's spot gave Valdez an advantage.

The local news reports that police are now discussing whether some of Valdez' friends should be arrested and charged with obstruction of justice for hampering a police investigation. Lt. Danielle Croyle of the Ogden police said: “We're talking about it and trying to figure out how do we address the kind of conflict that it presents." He noted, however, that police are “not sure yet how to deal with it." ®

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