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Memphis Police Arrest Man After Hostage Situation

A suspect in a South Memphis barricade situation Monday was arrested in a similar armed standoff involving his family about five months ago.

Vernard Stafford, 24, faces charges of aggravated assault, aggravated kidnapping and violating bond conditions in the latest incident, in which he is accused of holding his girlfriend at gunpoint for more than an hour. No injuries were reported.

The incident began about 12:45 p.m. at his apartment in the 900 block of Mississippi when Stafford and his girlfriend had an argument, according to a police affidavit. Circumstances of the argument were unclear. Stafford's mother escaped with his 1-year-old son before heavily armed Memphis TACT officers arrived and he surrendered.

Stafford's infant son and girlfriend were both held at gunpoint in a Sept. 26 barricade situation at her North Memphis apartment. Memphis TACT officers also responded to that incident, in which two shots were fired but no one was harmed.

That standoff began after Stafford allegedly choked his girlfriend. He was out on bond after being accused of attacking her two weeks earlier, and was ordered to stay away from her.

Stafford apparently violated the same bond condition again in Monday's standoff. He is being held in Shelby County Jail in lieu of $100,000 bond.
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