Suicide Ends 58 Hour Standoff in Corvallis
Ravalli County Sheriff Steve Holton sadly told KGVO News early Thursday morning that the man who had barricaded himself inside his Corvallis residence was found dead by a self-inflicted gunshot wound after a robot forced its way into the home.
Holton said the incident began when the man refused to come out of his home earlier in the week to face charges from another incident.
"At about 6:00 o'clock yesterday evening the suspect just stopped communicating with negotiators," said Holton. "We had negotiators and some additional resources from Missoula and Flathead Counties with their special response teams. We deployed some distraction devices and mechanical means with some armored vehicles, just trying to get him to restore contact with us."
Holton described what the robot found.
"Wouldn't respond to the bullhorn or any attempts to contact him, so in the course of that we were able to get a door open mechanically with the armored vehicle and put a robot into the house," he said. "That's when we found him deceased apparently with a gunshot wound."
Holton explained the response that lasted several days, in an effort to wait the suspect out.
"He didn't have a hostage, so there was really no reason to push the envelope," he said. "Generally, time is our friend and we can take advantage of that. As an office, we felt really strongly that the more patience we had and the longer we had to talk to him, and as long as he was talking to us, the better off we would be. It was about 58 hours and our guys worked very, very hard to get him to just come out and peacefully surrender. I can't say enough about my staff and the effort they put into that."
Holton extended his sincere condolences to the man's family.
"I can't put into words how badly we feel for that family and for their loss," he said. "We'll continue to work forward and do everything we can to support them. The Granite County Sheriff and the Hamilton Police Department are investigating it now, and anything we can do to help the family, that's what we want to do."
Holton also thanked the neighbors and the entire Corvallis community for the patience and support during the incident.
The suspect's name is being withheld pending notification of his family.