Rhonda Foster answered the knock on her door Sunday afternoon and saw four police officers carrying rifles and lining the stairwell leading to her second-story apartment.
She and her husband were told by police that a gunman had taken a woman hostage in her apartment in their building and were rushed, wearing only T-shirts and shorts, out of their home.
"It scared the tar out of me," Foster recalled Monday evening. "You don't expect that to happen when someone knocks on your door."
Things got crazier when Foster and her husband made it to the bottom of the stairwell, where officers were escorting people away from the building.
Foster heard seven gunshots. She had no way of knowing that the chaos at her central valley apartment complex would turn into a standoff between a gunman and police that would last throughout the night and into the next morning.
Las Vegas police said the man who took the woman hostage Sunday at the Sedona Hills complex, at 2895 E. Charleston Blvd., near Fremont Street, was shot and killed by police early Monday.
Police said the suspect, an unidentified 48-year-old man, randomly entered the woman's apartment Sunday afternoon.
Patrol officers responded to the initial call but backed off after they noticed the man had a gun.
Capt. Patrick Neville said officers were negotiating with the man to leave the apartment when he fired several shots at a sedan entering the parking lot.
Neville said the suspect mistakenly thought the sedan was an undercover police vehicle. It was being driven by a 21-year-old man with his teenage siblings in the car.
After the man began shooting, patrol officers fired several shots at the suspect. No one in the sedan was harmed, but the suspect might have been struck in the shoulder by gunfire, Neville said.
"That's still unconfirmed," he said.
SWAT officers were called to the scene and began a 12-hour negotiation with the man, Neville said. About 4:30 a.m. Monday, SWAT entered the apartment. The suspect fired a shot at police. One officer returned fire with a single shot, fatally striking the suspect.
Neville said police feared for the woman's safety after the prolonged standoff and decided to enter the apartment.
"They made the appropriate choice," he said.
The hostage, described as being in her late 20s or early 30s, was taken to University Medical Center for examination after the shooting. Neville said she was OK but was recovering from a traumatic experience.
The motivation for the home invasion was unknown.
Neville said the woman had been on the phone with a relative when the man entered her apartment. She screamed, and the call was disconnected. The relative called 911.
No one answered the door Monday evening at the apartment where the standoff occurred.
But signs of the devastation caused by the standoff were apparent.
Shattered glass covered the stairwell leading up to the apartment. One of the apartment's three windows was boarded up. The front door was held closed by a padlock.
Foster said police evacuated her from her apartment between 4:30 and 4:45 p.m. Sunday. She and her husband, wearing clothes appropriate for the beach, spent their evening standing in a parking lot east of where the standoff was going on. Foster said she and her husband had nowhere to go and didn't have a car to sleep in.
"It was a pretty miserable night," she said.
Police allowed them to return to the apartment Monday about 8 a.m., but both had to miss work because officers didn't allow residents of the building to leave until about 3 p.m. Monday. An officer told Foster that police didn't want residents compromising the crime scene.
Foster said she is grateful neither she nor her husband was injured, but she doesn't feel safe at her home anymore.
She asked one officer why the standoff was taking so long, and the officer told her it was because police didn't have any way to sneak up on the suspect. Only one stairwell leads to the apartment where the man barricaded himself.
Foster said she spoke to a maintenance man Monday, who told her police broke through several walls in nearby apartments to gain entry into the apartment where the woman was taken hostage.
The story was confirmed by an official with Las Vegas police.
"Imagine coming home to your apartment and a wall was removed where your bedroom or living room used to be," Foster said.