Armed man surrenders following 10-hour siege after negotiator sings White Christmas to him

Jane Dalton

A man with a rifle who held off a team of armed police in a 10-hour siege gave himself up after an officer sang a Christmas carol to him.

Nathaniel Lewis, 34, allegedly started shooting at the specialised police who rushed to his home in Pennsylvania, US, when a relative reported him acting erratically on Christmas evening.

The shots hit a police vehicle, a house and another vehicle, and the Swat (Special Weapons and Tactics) team returned fire.

Chester County district attorney Thomas Hogan wrote on Facebook: “Over a long and cold night, they kept negotiating with the man, who eventually started shooting at the police and around the neighbourhood.”

During the wait, Mr Hogan took home-made biscuits to the Swat team, and the stand-off dragged on until eventually a negotiator got Lewis to surrender by singing the Bing Crosby festive classic White Christmas.

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Lewis was taken into custody and reportedly charged with multiple counts of attempted homicide, aggravated assault and other offences.

Police did not say whether he surrendered because he liked the song or disliked the officer's rendition of it.

Agencies contributed to this report.