ORANGE PARK, Fla. – The man who shot and killed himself after a SWAT standoff in Orange Park Monday wanted help and didn't know what how to get it, his girlfriend told News4Jax Wednesday. He left behind a 7-month-old daughter.
The SWAT team negotiated with 22-year-old Aaron Shene for about four hours after he barricaded himself inside a vacant home on Neptune Drive. He ran there after escaping his girlfriend's house when she called police on him. The standoff ended when Shene took his own life.
Shene and his girlfriend, Sarah Lee, had a 7-month-old daughter together named Adalynn.
"He just wanted help. And he didn't know what to do," Lee said.
Shene was arrested on four counts of grand theft in Clay County and two counts of grand theft in Duval County in 2011. He served time in prison for burglary and dealing in stolen property. He was scheduled for a pretrial hearing Wednesday for another grand theft charge in December in Duval County.
Lee said her on-again, off-again boyfriend broke into her house Sunday night through the kitchen window and wouldn't let her leave.
She said Shene wanted her to have him committed to a mental health facility, that he was tired of living how he was and felt like he was a burden on everyone.
"He's been asking for help for a long time. And nobody took it seriously. They thought he was just doing it for attention," Lee said. "I'm not blaming anybody for anything, but I could have done some stuff different, and I'm sure everybody else could have done some stuff different, too."
With the police after him, Shene barricaded himself inside a vacant home in the Bellair West neighborhood in Orange Park. SWAT found him with a gun and surrounded the house. A detective called Lee on speaker phone so she could try calming him down.
"I'm like, 'Aaron, you're not alone. You have me, and you have your daughter. Please, you promised me, you pinky promised me you weren't going to leave me by myself,'" Lee said.
A couple hours later Shene pulled the trigger.
Although he had a troubled past, Lee said he was a good person with a big heart and passion for his work as an electrician and that he loved his daughter more than anything in the world.
"He had so much potential to do anything he wanted to do," Lee said. "He was so smart, and he always figured everything out. I just don't understand why he didn't feel there was another way out."
Lee remembered the perfect Valentine's Day she and Shene just had together. She said Shene was the first to see Adalynn crawl. And Tuesday, the little girl stood for the very first time.
Lee wishes Shene had been there to see it.
"She is the most impacted person of the outcome of this suicide, and she doesn't even know it yet. And that is sad," Lee said.
Family and friends have started a GoFundMe account in Shene's name to raise money for his funeral. To donate, go to http://www.gofundme.com/n49keo.
If you or someone you know is in a crisis, help is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Just call 1-800-273-TALK.