MIDDLETOWN (WABC) --Authorities are investigating the circumstances surrounding a police-involved shooting early Wednesday morning in Middletown Township in which a member of the Monmouth County Emergency Response Team fatally shot a man who allegedly was armed with a knife and holding his 13-month-old son hostage in his home following a domestic dispute.
According to the preliminary investigation, 39-year-old Scott McAllister was fatally shot at approximately 4:30 a.m. inside his rented house at 33 Bayside Parkway in Ideal Beach.
Officials say the events leading to the shooting started around 11:30 p.m. Tuesday, when the Middletown Township Police Department responded to a 911 call reporting a domestic dispute at the house.
When officers arrived, police say the mother of the child had fled from the house. She reported that McAllister was intoxicated and had beaten her, and that he was armed with a knife and threatening to harm their child.
McAllister was reportedly locked inside the house with the couple's 17-month-old son and refused to allow the police to enter.
"Cops were everywhere, a couple of guys with automatic weapons in the driveway, trying to get the guy on the balcony to put his hands up," Middletown resident Ron Roy said. "He said he wasn't coming out, retreated into the house, and that was the last you saw of him."
The Monmouth County Emergency Response Team was deployed to the scene, and a hostage negotiator attempted through the night to get McAllister to surrender peacefully and turn over the child.
"So then, I heard the cops negotiating, answer your phone, come out with your hands up," area resident Carmine Ruocco said.
At approximately 4:30 a.m., the SWAT team forced entry into the house, where they encountered McAllister, who is believed to have been armed with a knife. One member of the team fired at McAllister, fatally wounding him.
The child, who was near McAllister, was not harmed.
McAllister was pronounced dead at the scene by Monmouth County Emergency Services.
Neighbors say the couple began renting the house less than a year ago, but they hadn't seen signs of domestic trouble.
"It didn't seem like it," one neighbor said. "They had a Memorial Day party with people cooking, having a good time, and a couple days later, here's this going on."
No further details of the shooting are being released at this time because of the ongoing investigation.