By Shereen Siewert

Wausau Police have released new details in a standoff that ensued Thursday after a report of shots fired on the city’s west side.

Lt. Bill Kolb said police responded at 7:18 p.m. to the vicinity of South 24th Avenue and Helmke Street for a report of shots fired.

When officers arrived, they found a vehicle in a snowbank and made contact with two women, age 20 and 24, who were occupants of the vehicle. At the same time, officers made contact with a third occupant, 25-year-old Jairime S Merwin, on Helmke Street between South 22nd Avenue and South 24th Avenue.

According to Kolb’s release, Merwin was armed with a 9-mm handgun.

After 12 minutes of negotiation with officers, Merwin was taken into custody without further incident.

Investigators say Merwin was arguing with the two women inside a vehicle when he pulled a handgun. While sitting in the front passenger seat, Merwin allegedly fired at least two rounds into the floorboard of the vehicle; a physical altercation also took place.

After the vehicle crashed into a snowbank on South 24th Avenue, Merwin left the vehicle and discharged multiple additional rounds into the ground, police said.

No one was struck by gunfire, authorities said, though the two women were injured as a result of the physical altercation inside the vehicle. Their injuries are considered non-life threatening.

The Wausau Police Department will be recommending the following charges:  First Degree Recklessly Endangering Safety, Endangering Safety by Use of a Dangerous Weapon, False Imprisonment, Battery, Intoxicated Use of a Firearm, and Disorderly Conduct.  Merwin’s initial appearance has not yet been scheduled and official charges are at the discretion of the Marathon County District Attorney’s Office.

Top photo courtesy of Ken Amundsen