Man in armed standoff charged, faces hard time

A 40-year-old man who barricaded himself in a North Whidbey motor home and held off police with a sawed-off rifle during a three-and-a-half-hour standoff could end up in prison, court documents indicate.

Prosecutors charged Tracy Rosenbaum, a rural Oak Harbor resident, in Island County Superior Court July 15 with two counts of assault in the second degree, unlawful possession of a firearm and possession of an unlawful firearm.

If convicted of the charges against him, Rosenbaum would face a standard sentencing range of two years and nine months to three years and seven months in prison.

Island County Detective Sgt. Mike Beech responded to the report of a domestic assault at a home on Noisey Circle July 10. Kyle Rosenbaum, 38, reported that his older brother Tracy had stabbed him in the hand with a knife, Beech wrote in his report.

Kyle reported that he got into a fight with his brother, who lives in a motor home on the property.

Kyle said he was driving a truck and accelerated up the driveway while yelling at his brother. Tracy slashed through the truck’s window with a large hunting knife and cut Kyle’s hand, the report states. The younger man put the vehicle in reverse to escape as Tracy tried to stab him, Beech wrote.

Then Tracy went into the house and came out with a gun, which he leveled at Kyle, documents indicate.

Beech, a deputy and two state troopers went to the address several hours later to contact Tracy. He barricaded himself inside the motor home with several weapons, including an illegally-sawed-off 30.06 rifle, the report states.

The sheriff’s “Hard Entry Arrest Team,” the Oak Harbor Police Department Special Response Team and the state patrol responded to the scene.

Beech authorized the use of a “throw phone” to establish contact with Rosenbaum. The HEAT team’s hostage negotiator, Deputy John Neider, assisted by Oak Harbor Officer Dennis Dickinson, communicated with Rosenbaum for more than an hour, ultimately convincing him to surrender, ending the standoff without having to use deadly force.

The police were familiar with Tracy Rosenbaum from past contacts. In a similar incident in 2007, he held off police in a standoff while he was wearing a bullet-proof vest under his clothing, according to the sheriff’s office.

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