Forestville man suspected of threatening postal worker, deputies with weapons

A Forestville man was in the Sonoma County Jail Tuesday afternoon on suspicion of threatening a postal worker with a knife and then swinging an ax at responding deputies, triggering a five-hour standoff with authorities on Monday afternoon before he was forcefully taken into custody.

Deputies learned about the suspect, Michael Ritchie, 38, after receiving a 11:13 a.m. report on Monday about a knife-wielding man who confronted a postal worker as they were leaving the Forestville Post Office, Sonoma County Sheriff’s Office spokesman Sgt. Juan Valencia said.

Deputies responded and found Ritchie nearby at his home on Highway 116. As deputies spoke to him in front of the house, Ritchie raised a three-foot long ax over his head and said he wanted to start a war, Valencia said. He then swung the weapon and lunged toward the deputies, who kept their distance, Valencia said.

Ritchie used chairs and a table to barricade himself on a porch at the residence, Valencia said.


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