Ellis' mom lives in an apartment in a house on Wheeler Street--the same house 25-year-old Shane Tucker lives in.
Police took 25-year-old Shane Johnathan Tucker into custody after a nearly 10-hour standoff.
Tucker had barricaded himself inside this home with police surrounding him.
By WHITNEY GOOD 6 News Reporter
KNOXVILLE (WATE) - A man is in custody after a nearly 10-hour standoff in East Knoxville Saturday.
Police say Shane Johnathan Tucker, 25, barricaded himself inside his home with at least three weapons after reports that he had gone on a shooting spree overnight and may have been shooting at traffic on the interstate behind his house.They say Tucker was facing some personal issues that may have sent him into a rage. Tucker was also under the influence of alcohol.
According to police, they spent much of the afternoon negotiating with Tucker, but just after 7 p.m. they sent two rounds of tear gas into the home to force him out.
Paloma Ellis' mom lives in an apartment that's part of the same house as Tucker's on Wheeler Street.
"I got a text message from her at about 11 a.m. Saying all hell has broken loose," said Ellis. "They were friends. They used to play games together all the time, and they would talk, but I guess he had been drinking quite a bit."
Ellis says her mom texted her to tell her that Tucker had barricaded himself in the home and police were surrounding them.
"I told my mom, I'm like, 'Mom he's bad news. Don't talk to him, just quit talking to him.' And she was like, 'Well he's my friend. I don't think he'll ever hurt me.' And I just think she was trying to be there for him as a friend, and it shows what kind of friend he was," said Ellis.
Police also had reports of gunshots in the neighborhood overnight, including through the windows of a minivan and reports of a man on the interstate near that same area waving a pistol and possibly shooting at traffic.
Both lanes of traffic on Interstate 40 near the Cherry Street exit were shut down for several hours during the standoff, which began around 9 a.m. Saturday. Police were able to get Ellis' mom out of the house shortly after that.
Police say they spent hours negotiating with Tucker. They say he made several requests to talk to people including his pastor and for food.
"A lot of times it can be good to allow them to talk to certain individuals. At other times it can be bad, so they have to really weigh the situation at the time at determine if it would be good," said Darrell DeBusk with the Knoxville Police Department.
Tucker is charged with felony reckless endangerment and possession of a weapon with intent to go armed. More charges could follow once the investigation is complete. Police say no one was injured during the incidents Saturday. Several people were evacuated from their homes nearby but were allowed to return after Tucker was arrested. Interstate traffic was also allowed to resume shortly after.