Man arrested in standoff: Son, 2 students safe

Posted at 4:56 AM, Mar 04, 2016
and last updated 2016-03-04 11:27:02-05
SPRING VALLEY, Calif. – A man who barricaded himself inside a Spring Valley home for more than five hours with his young son and two foreign exchange students was taken into custody early Friday morning. 
The suspect, identified as 30-year-old Francois Konekotto, surrendered at around 6:45 a.m. 
The incident began at 9:30 p.m. Thursday when San Diego County Sheriff’s deputies responded to a domestic violence call from the suspect’s wife at a home in the 1600 block of Ramona Avenue, According to sheriff’s department spokesperson Jan Caldwell. 
At the time, the suspect, his wife, their son and two 17-year-old foreign exchange students were inside the home.
A sheriff’s captain initially told 10News that the man's entire family, along with the students, had escaped. However, the sheriff’s department later clarified that the man’s wife got out, but their 7-year-old son and the two students were still trapped inside. 
Deputies blocked off the street and a SWAT team was called out at 1:30 a.m.  and proceeded to negotiate with the man. Deputies attempted phone calls, a PA system and even a flash bang to try and draw him out. However, Konekotto did not respond. 
At about 6:45 a.m. the suspect exited the home with his son and peacefully surrendered. The two exchange students were able to escape the home about 20 minutes prior to his surrender. He was placed in a spit bag as he was arrested because he was spitting at deputies.
The sheriff’s department reported that it used less lethal force during the arrest, but did not specify what. Less lethal force could refer to a beanbag round or a K-9. 
No one was harmed. However, Konekotto’s wife was transported to a local hospital with minor injuries. 
It was unclear if he had any weapons inside the home during the standoff.
No neighboring homes were evacuated.