• Police: Man tries to flush baby down toilet before standoff; baby out of hospital

    Updated:

    PITTSBURGH - A man tried to flush his baby down a toilet before getting into a standoff with police early Tuesday morning in Mount Washington, authorities said.

    The incident began shortly after midnight when the baby's mother and father were arguing about child care inside a home on Southern Avenue. Police said the father threw the baby’s crib down the stairs and told family members he was going to kill them all.

    Police said the father, who they identified as 31-year-old Dennis Gateley, pulled out a gun and held the 6-week-old baby's head in the toilet at least two times.

    According to court papers obtained by Channel 11's Renee Kaminski, the family dog bit Gateley during a struggle between Gateley and several family members over the child.

    The baby's mother told investigators that Gateley also hit the child's head on a wall.

    The woman and the baby were able to escape from the home. The child was taken to the hospital. The woman suffered a black eye in the incident.

    When Gateley would not leave the home, SWAT was called. About three hours later, officers were able to convince him to surrender.

    “Which one of you were hiding behind the car? I could have picked either one of you off at any time,” Gateley allegedly said to police after he was taken into custody. “I had the advantage because I has the high ground.”

    Gateley faces charges of aggravated assault, simple assault, terroristic threats and endangering the welfare of a child.

    A spokesperson for the family told Kaminski that the baby has been released from the hospital and is back home.

    Kaminski also learned that Gateley is a convicted felon. He pleaded guilty to sexual assault in 2008, and a year later was convicted of disarming a police officer, aggravated assault and resisting arrest. In both 2013 and 2015, he pleaded guilty to simple assault.

    Dennis Gateley
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