Cecilia DowdMay 19, 2017, 8:33 pmMay 19, 2017, 11:11 pm

Man commits suicide after tense police standoff at Center Moriches church

The suspect allegedly tried to set an officer on fire after holing up inside the St. John the Evangelist Church

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A bomb-detecting robot and heavily armed officers were on-scene throughout the afternoon and evening at the St. John the Evangelist Church in Center Moriches after police ay a man barricaded himself inside the building and later died of an apparent suicide.

Police swarmed the church after receiving a 9-1-1 call from an off-duty NYPD officer who happened to be passing by. That witness said that he saw a man trying to light a vehicle on fire in the parking lot of the church before going inside.

According to Suffolk Police Commissioner Tim Sini, when officers first encountered the suspect, the man threw gasoline threw gasoline towards a officer, along with a match, attempting to light a fire. The officer was unharmed.

"Our officers immediately observed incendiary devices, what appeared to be incendiary devices, including propane tanks," Sini said.

The church remained a crime scene well into the night as investigators worked to make sure there were no explosives on the property, however as of this time, police say that the church has been deemed safe and the suspect was the only person injured in the incident.

The suspect has not yet been identified.

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