A standoff in northeastern Mason City yesterday afternoon ended peacefully but not without a fire starting. Police were called to the home shortly after noon yesterday after a 9-1-1 caller said Jon Wilmarth was in a garage behind the home, distraught, possibly suicidal, and possessed a gun. City trucks and squad cars blocked off the area while the Mason City Police Department’s negotiations team and the North Central Iowa Narcotics Task Force Strategic Operations Group were called in. Police talked with Wilmarth via a portable phone until about two o’clock when Wilmarth threw the phone out the window. A short time later a fire started in the garage, with Wilmarth eventually emerging from the structure. Wilmarth was taken to a Mason City hospital after the incident. Police say the incident remains under investigation, but they don’t expect any criminal charges to be filed.
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