Watertown police: Man dead from self-inflicted gunshot wound at Emerson Street home

Published: Apr. 19, 2023 at 2:06 PM EDT
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WATERTOWN, New York (WWNY) - The heavy police presence on and around Emerson Street in Watertown has ended. Police say a suicidal man shot himself to death before they even got there.

Watertown Police Detective Sergeant Joseph Giaquinto says law enforcement officials were called to 537 Emerson Street Wednesday afternoon for a report of a suicidal man with a gun.

The report prompted heavy turnout from city police and the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office, which responded with its Mine-Resistant Ambush Protected, or MRAP, vehicle.

Giaquinto says police tried to make contact with the man, but he was already dead from a self-inflicted gunshot wound. He was the only one inside the house.

Before police knew the man was dead, Emerson and other streets were blocked off for several hours, while police waited outside the house with weapons drawn.

At one point, police used a ladder to push in an air conditioner on the second floor of the house and remove what appeared to be a towel. The officer hurried back down the ladder as police continued to point guns at the home.

Giaquinto says the man’s name is being withheld as police notify family members.

During the ordeal, the Watertown City School District sent an alert to parents saying that any elementary and Wiley students affected by busing to High, Emerson, Mechanic, Olive, and Jefferson streets would be held at the schools that they attend.

The alert said parents were welcome to pick up their children “as we await more direction from the authorities.”

7 News will update this story when we get more information.