San Mateo police arrested a 51-year-old man early Wednesday morning after he set a small fire and barricaded himself inside a hospital room at the San Mateo Medical Center.
Police and fire officials responded to the medical center, located at 222 W 39th Ave., at about 10:45 p.m. Tuesday to reports of a patient who had set a fire in his hospital room on the first floor, San Mateo Police Sgt. Dave Norris said.
San Mateo Police Department and San Mateo Fire Department arrived as security and staff from the hospital were evacuating about 29 hospital rooms in the southwest portion of the building, according to Norris. Hospital staff had also extinguished the small fire.
The patient, later identified as 51 year-old Hillsborough resident Zavtcho Stoyanov, had isolated himself in a hospital room and was reported to be in possession of a knife, Norris said.
San Mateo police set up a close perimeter around the room of the upset patient, and a police negotiator attempted to speak with Stoyanov. In addition, a trained tactical team was assembled to safely retrieve him from the room.
At about 1 a.m. Wednesday, Stoyanov was safely detained, and the incident was resolved.
Police learned that in addition to setting the small fire, Stoyanov had also attempted to stab a hospital staff member during the incident.
Stoyanov was evaluated and cleared by the hospital staff, and subsequently booked into San Mateo County Jail on suspicion of assault with a deadly weapon and arson.
No one was injured at the San Mateo Medical Center as a result of the incident.
“Due to the quick action of those responding, this incident was resolved without serious injury to patients, hospital staff, or the suspect,” said Dr. Susan Ehrlich, CEO of San Mateo Medical Center.
“Medical Center staff, and the San Mateo Police and Fire Departments are to be commended for reacting professionally and expediently to control the situation,” she said.