Wanted man surrenders after 8-hour SWAT standoff in Brevard County

Man barricades self in Merritt Island mobile home park

Published On: Jan 30 2013 03:32:15 PM EST   Updated On: Jan 09 2013 12:14:44 AM EST
MERRITT ISLAND, Fla. -

Deputies say after an 8-hour standoff, a man has surrendered after he barricaded himself in a mobile home park near State Road 520 and Courtenay Parkway.

Brevard County Sheriff's deputies said 40-year-old Kenneth Wood is an escaped inmate from Delaware. They said Wood is a convicted rapist and escaped from a work release program in Delaware.

Neighbors inside the mobile home park off Merritt Island Causeway said Wood was a new face, but he seemed like a nice guy.

"He seemed friendly," said neighbor Chance Marquardt. "He looked over and waved at me and my grandma."

However, according to Brevard County Sheriff's deputies, Wood was squatting inside a mobile home until Tuesday night, when he surrendered to a SWAT team after the standoff began at about 2:30 p.m.

At one point, Sheriff Wayne Ivey said Wood tried escaping through the floor of the trailer.

"As soon as he did, our team of course, was again on the perimeter, and was able to address his presence," said Ivey. "He decided it was probably in his best interest to go back into the trailer."

Deputies said Wood escaped from Delaware last month, then went on a crime spree. First, deputies said he committed two armed robberies in Alabama, then a third at a convenience store in the panhandle.

Investigators said the stolen car he used in that robbery was towed out of the mobile home park Tuesday night.

Authorities said neighbors were evacuated, but were let back in around 9:00 p.m.