Police shoot 1 person in the leg during SWAT standoff at north Austin hotel

Austin

AUSTIN (KXAN) — One person is now in police custody at the hospital after police shot him following a standoff Monday morning at a north Austin hotel.

Austin Police Department Assistant Chief Troy Gay said in a media briefing the suspect, Dylan Polinski, 23, was being sought on a previous warrant for aggravated robbery out of Williamson County. APD was called in Sunday night around 9:50 p.m. to help take Polinski into custody after authorities believed he was at Springhill Suites off Interstate 35. But Polinski was nowhere to be found at that time.

Dylan Polinski (APD Photo)
Dylan Polinski (APD Photo)

Later on Monday morning around 3:48 a.m., police were called back to the hotel by staff there and were told Polinski had returned. It was then officers tried to get him to surrender around 4:20 a.m., but he refused and barricaded himself in his room and held a woman against her will with him, Gay said.

“Our officers received information that subject was considered dangerous and potentially armed with a firearm,” Gay said.

Rooms around the suspect’s room were evacuated, and the SWAT team arrived at the scene around 5:20 a.m., Gay said.

A SWAT team responded to the SpringHill Suites in north Austin and took a person into custody after an officer-involved shooting Monday (KXAN photo/Julie Karam)

“I was nervous,” said hotel guest Mark Franklin. “Because at, you know, 4 o’clock in the morning, you get a knock at your door saying, ‘Austin Police Department,’ you’re like, ‘Okay, what’s going on?'”

Franklin says he and other guests were asked to wait in the lobby. He says they were only told that there may be a hostage situation unfolding in the hotel.

Polinski eventually came out of his room using the woman as a shield, but police were able to get the woman to safety, Gay said. Polinski then ran to an exit into a stairwell where APD officers were waiting, and one of them deployed a TASER, Gay said.

According to APD, Polinski closed the door to the stairwell after that, then reopened it and rushed at the officers. One officer fired a weapon and hit Polinski, Gay said. Polinski was taken to a hospital to treat his leg injury. The woman he had in the room was unharmed, and no officers were injured, Gay said.

“With them being able to recognize that someone isn’t supposed to be there and get the law involved, it was pretty good on their behalf. Very fast, and they controlled it well,” Franklin said of the hotel staff that recognized Polinski, called for help and kept guests in a safe spot during the incident.

A press release sent later on Monday said after treatment, Polinski will be booked into jail on the previous aggravated robbery warrant. More charges may follow after an investigation, APD said.

Gay said the incident was caught on the officers’ body-worn cameras, and two investigations will happen as a result. The district attorney’s office will conduct one of them, and APD’s internal affairs division will do the other, Gay said. Per protocol, both officers will be placed on paid administrative leave, the release said.

According to records, Polinski was previously arrested in the Austin area once in 2019 and twice in 2020 on assault causes bodily injury to a family member, unauthorized use of vehicle and theft charges.

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