PORTLAND — A standoff at a Portland apartment with a man police say made “suicidal and homicidal” threats ended peacefully this morning.

The standoff on Washburn Avenue came to an end as police took 41-year-old Patrick Mullen into protective custody around 4:30 a.m.

The incident began shortly after 3 p.m. on Thursday after someone reported that Mullen had made suicidal and homicidal threats during a telephone conversation. Police went to his building on Washburn Street, near St. John Street, and tried to make contact with him. 

Police said Mullen was extremely uncooperative and that they were unable to engage him in dialogue. Mullen made a number of threats – including to blow up the building and burn it to the ground – and at one point displayed a firearm, according to police.

Police cordoned off an area around the building, blocked off nearby streets and called in the special reaction team and hostage crisis negotiators. At one point, the special reaction team used tear gas to get Mullen out.

Several members of the special response team, wearing body armor and carrying rifles, showed up at the scene. They converted a nearby business, the Lock Stock & Barrel locksmith shop, into command headquarters.

Around 10:15 p.m., an armored squad car moved into position next to the apartment building.

“Patrick, we are not going to hurt you or your dog,” an officer said through a bullhorn. “Walk toward the door nice and slowly with your hands where we can see them.”

When the man did not emerge from the building, the armored vehicle was withdrawn.

The three-story apartment building where Mullen lives is near Hadlock Field and one of the city’s busiest intersections, at Park Avenue and St. John Street.

The incident drove several Washburn Street residents out of their homes. They were forced to wait on sidewalks while police attempted to negotiate with the man.

Neighbors said the man involved lives alone in an apartment in the building with his golden retriever.

Police Chief Michael Sauschuck held a brief news conference early Thursday evening. He said police were called to Washburn Street after someone reported that the man was “making suicidal-homicidal threats.”

Sauschuck refused to characterize the situation as a standoff because police, at least late Thursday night, apparently had been unable to make contact with the man.

A couple of residents at the scene talked about their previous interactions with Mullen.

Greg Benson said he left his job at Bristol Seafood on the waterfront around 3 p.m. Thursday. When he arrived at Washburn Street, it was blocked off and he was told that he could not return to his apartment.

“(Patrick) is a really nice guy. I just hope they can pull him out of there without anyone getting hurt,” Benson said.

Another Washburn Street resident, Angela Ingalls, said the man confronted her on Sunday while she was walking her dog. She had never met him before.

“He said, ‘Why are you on my property?’ He ordered me to leave and he was cursing at me,” Ingalls said.

Staff Writer Dennis Hoey can be contacted at 791-6365 or at:

[email protected]