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Reported sex crime turns into armed standoff near Maple Valley

MAPLE VALLEY, Wash. -- A reported sex offense at a home near Maple Valley turned into an hour-long standoff Tuesday between police and the gun-wielding suspect.

King County sheriff's deputies got a call at 6 p.m. about a sex offense at a home in the 18800 block of SE 164th Street.

When they arrived, the suspect grabbed a gun and ran into a wooded area behind the house, according to Sgt. Stan Seo with the King County sheriff's office.

"The suspect, who was previously convicted of a sex offense, fled out the back. He happened to be armed with a handgun," Seo said.

Deputies soon found and surrounded the man, but he still refused to surrender. Hostage negotiators and a SWAT team quickly arrived on scene, and King County's Guardian One helicopter flew over the scene to make sure the suspect didn't slip away.

Roughly an hour after the standoff began, hostage negotiators convinced the man to surrender. He was arrested and will be booked into King County Jail on suspicion of child molestation.

Seo said the suspect is a convicted sex offender. The 11-year-old victim is now with her family. Seo said the man was "an acquaintance" of the victim, but he didn't know if they were related.

No one was injured during the standoff and Seo doesn't believe any neighbors were evacuated.

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