BY JENNIFER CABRERA
Teirnee Cherelle Simmons, 24, was arrested early this morning after allegedly threatening two other women with a gun and then refusing to come out of an apartment for several hours, only emerging after the SWAT team arrived.
According to the arrest report, Gainesville Police Department officers responded to Treehouse Village on SE 16th Avenue at 3:26 p.m. yesterday in response to a call about an armed disturbance. When officers arrived, they learned that the suspect, Simmons, had gone inside an apartment, where she remained for the next few hours.
The woman who called 911 told officers that Simmons had asked her for a ride back to the apartment complex from another location, and when they arrived at the woman’s apartment, she gave Simmons a haircut. She said she offered Simmons a cup of alcohol during the haircut and refused to accept payment from Simmons for the drink. She said there was a verbal dispute over the payment, which led to Simmons walking outside the apartment yelling “various things” about the woman. The woman said that when she walked outside, Simmons went inside another apartment, came out with a handgun, and threatened her with it.
Another woman told officers that she tried to calm things down by standing between Simmons and the first woman, at which point the first woman went back inside her apartment. A few minutes later, she went back outside to see why the second woman hadn’t come back inside, and she said Simmons again threatened both of them with the gun. She said that was when she called the police and when Simmons retreated inside the other apartment. The woman took a cell phone picture of Simmons holding the gun, with her finger inside the trigger guard, wearing a yellow shirt.
Officers made loudspeaker announcements to Simmons to come out of the apartment, but she reportedly refused to do so for several hours, although she could be seen through the window. Police evacuated her building as a precaution during that time. The Negotiations Response Team also failed to persuade Simmons to come out of the apartment. After the SWAT team was called out and placed on standby near the area, Simmons reportedly came out of the apartment and surrendered to police.
A search warrant for her apartment was obtained, and police found a yellow shirt matching the one in the picture, along with a .380 handgun with no magazine or ammunition.
Post Miranda, Simmons reportedly acknowledged a dispute over a “cup of alcohol” but denied any physical confrontation. She also reportedly said she had not worn a yellow shirt or had a gun that day. When she was told there was a photo of her with the gun, she reportedly said she had a BB gun and had been shooting at squirrels earlier in the day. She later reportedly changed her story and said she had changed clothes at least three times that day, including wearing the yellow shirt.
Cell phone video was reportedly located from another witness, showing Simmons pointing a gun at a target out of the frame of the camera. Simmons reportedly said it was only a BB gun and denied knowledge of the .380 handgun, saying, “if it’s not a BB gun, that’s the wrong one.”
Simmons has been charged with two counts of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon without intent to kill and is being held on $100,000 bond.
Articles about arrests are based on reports from law enforcement agencies. The charges listed are taken from the arrest report and/or court records and are only accusations. All suspects are innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.