Six-hour siege with man who tried to stab police officer

Chris Laing.

Chris Laing.

A man who allegedly barricaded himself inside a house and held police at bay for more than six hours during a siege in western Victoria has been remanded in custody.

Chris Laing appeared briefly before the Ballarat Magistrates Court yesterday charged with multiple offences including assaulting and threatening to stab a police officer following the tense stand-off on Saturday morning.

Police had attended a house in Stawell after CCTV footage allegedly captured Laing breaking into the town’s post office the previous night before stealing an Australia Post tub and packages.

But when officers arrived at the house the 26-year-old allegedly lunged at a police officer with a knife before barricading himself inside.

In response, heavily armed police of the Critical Incident Response Team were called in.

Photos from the scene showed more than a dozen police officers and multiple vehicles lining the suburban street.

Hours later, Laing allegedly armed himself with several knives and left the house before police used a taser and managed to arrest him – six and a half hours after first arriving.

He was taken to Ballarat Base Hospital for a mental health assessment and was kept in custody until his court appearance yesterday.

A police summary tendered to the court alleges Laing said to a woman who lived in the house he had “done over the post office”.

He also allegedly refused to talk after being arrested but at one point said “yeah I did it, I wanted attention” while denying assaulting the police officer, according to the summary.

Laing, who was supported by a woman yesterday, did not apply for bail and will return to court next month.