At least a dozen heavily armed Nassau County police officers, some of them wearing bullet-proof vests and helmets or carrying riot shields, filled North Merrick’s Stevens Avenue on Monday afternoon.
A Stevens Avenue resident, who declined to be identified, said that police officers came to her door, told her that a man was brandishing a gun in a nearby house and asked that she and her family evacuate beyond a police perimeter.
Officer Steven Zacchia, a Nassau County Police Department spokesman, said Tuesday that police took “precautions” after receiving a report that a man had threatened his wife with a gun inside their home, but the report proved to be incorrect. Zacchia declined to say precisely what happened inside the couple’s home, other than that it was a medical incident.
Shortly before 3 p.m. on Monday, police closed Stevens Avenue between Camp Avenue and Howes Street. At least 11 police vehicles, including an Emergency Services Unit truck, an ambulance, and marked and unmarked patrol cars, jammed the block.
A woman emerged from the house where police were focusing their attention and walked unaided into an NCPD ambulance, said a witness, who also described seeing officers take a man from the house on a stretcher.
The neighbor, who waited with a family member on the opposite side of Camp Avenue for the police cordon to end, described the couple involved in the police call as “very nice people” and reported no previous incidents in which either was involved in disturbing the block’s peace.
Ronald Reinkein, principal of the nearby Camp Avenue Elementary School, made sure parents and guardians of students who live on Stevens Avenue picked up children from school instead of allowing them to walk home alone, according to North Merrick Superintendent David Feller.