American Red Cross providing shelter for residents displaced after standoff

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WICHITA, Kansas — Police tape is still up at Southlake Village to block off the crime scene.

Some residents are still without a place to stay, but just a couple of miles away the American Red Cross is providing help.

Desi Lopez is moving out of Southlake Village Friday evening.

“It’s been a hectic and chaotic week,” said Desi Lopez, resident.

Lopez has been planning the move for a while now, but with the stand off lasting more than 30 hours– the move was put on hold.

“It’s been a huge problem this week because of the situation we had,” said Lopez.

Police evacuated residents in three buildings at Southlake Village during the standoff, and even now, some tenants can’t return because of damaged to their apartments and police continuing to gather evidence.

The American Red Cross was called in to help residents who may not have a place to stay.

“We have a dormitory set up in the gym, we have a space for kids to go play, relax and burn off the energy that they have and a place for parents to kind of sit down,” said Bryan Saindon, Regional Disaster Program Officer for the American Red Cross.

Up to 20 volunteers set up the shelter at Ruth Clark Elementary School Thursday Evening.

“We’ve had anywhere from two to three or five to six individuals that have come through the shelter,” said Saindon.

Saindon says they brought in boxes of supplies and more than enough cots to fill the demand if needed.

“People tend to find places to go, friends to go to relax, but we want to make sure everyone is taken care of and that they have a place cool to come stay relax a little bit during the day if they need too,” said Saindon.

Volunteers say they do what they can to help and they’re hoping to help residents get their lives back to normal.

“You know that’s the end goal for us is to just return to that sense of normalcy here as quickly as possible,” said Saindon. “But law enforcement has a job to do we’re definitely here to support them anytime it takes them to do their job.”

Now police are allowing some residents back in their apartments to retrieve their pets, but they point out because of the investigation it could take some time before their allowed back into their homes.

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