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Naked Man Arrested After SWAT Standoff at Mahwah Condo, Police Say

Man had tacked a gas mask, chemical engineering college diploma, plastic bag containing bullets and a rifle flash suppressor attachment, and a note taped to his front door, prompting a police response Tuesday morning, police said.

A man who police say has a history of mental illness was taken into custody Tuesday afternoon after an hours-long standoff with cops and the county SWAT Team at his parent's Mahwah condo, Mahwah Police Chief Jim Batelli said in a release Tuesday evening.

According to Batelli, the man was escorted out of the Society Hill condo on Juniper Way wearing only a bed sheet at about 3:30 p.m. Tuesday.

Cops said they responded to the unit at about 8:30 a.m., after neighbors reported a gas masked tacked to the man's front door. Cops also found a chemical engineering degree, a plastic bag filled with bullets and a flash suppressor rifle attachment, and a note that warned not to come in because “chemo bio fire cannot be subdued,” attached to the outside of the front door, Batelli said. 

After a six-hour standoff during which the man barricaded himself in the home, police said he was found in a neighboring condo unit after seemingly climbing through an attic and lowering himself into the unit, Batelli said. Police found him sitting naked in the home's living room, the he said.

During the standoff, Batelli said police tried to contact the man through the door, via cell phone, house phone, and bull horn, but they were unsuccessful.

The Bergen County SWAT Team, bomb squad, and HazMat crew responded to the scene, and attempted using a bomb robot to locate the man within the condo, and pepper spray to get him out, Batelli said. The man had moved furniture in the unit blocking the robot, and did not come out after pepper spray was used, he said.

After the SWAT Team entered the unit, they found a hole cut in the attic’s sheetrock and followed it to find the man in the adjacent condo unit, the police chief said. 

The man was identified as Maksim Burakhovich, who Batelli said suffers from “emotiona[l] issues” and who was prescribed medication that he had stopped taking.

Burakhovich was transported to Bergen Regional Medical Center for evaluation, and charges against him are pending, police said.

Jake Viscone June 12, 2014 at 01:50 AM
K. Hovnanian built them, what do you expect?
Thunderbird Pride June 12, 2014 at 06:46 AM
While I don't know how Society Hill is built, firewalls are typically made of fireproof gypsum board that must go all the way to the roof. Sounds like that was what you had here. The dude was found naked in the next condo with water bottles and a butcher knife. He also had wounds from climbing through the firewall. Sounds like he was up in the extremely hot attic with the knife digging his way through the firewall. Might have stripped naked due to the heat up there. Once he got a big enough hole in the wall, he crawled in and then found the attic stairs in the next unit. He lowered those down and went into the unit. Was likely dehydrated and exhausted by then which is why they found him naked with water bottles around him and he put up no fight. People think firewalls are for security. They are not. They do not need to be made of brick, steel or cement. Sheetrock of a proper fire rating is what can be used. Making sure that the wall goes all the way to the roof is the most important part as it creates the firebreak between units.
bill wyckoff June 12, 2014 at 07:31 AM
have no fear he is at Bergen Regional give them a few days some clothes and they will say he is completely cured and normal !!! They may even send him to west Bergen Mental Health they will say he doesn't have a plan he won't kill himself !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1
Kathy Errico June 12, 2014 at 07:49 PM
Interesting Thunderbird. I didn't know that. He cut through the ceiling in the adjacent unit as well.. No stairs to drop down. Made a mess of the unit. Between the police breaking in the door and the plaster all over.
Hank June 12, 2014 at 09:20 PM
might want to throw out the sofa after the naked guy sat on it

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