Cops: Armed man made threats before crashing

Rescuers carry up a accident victim

Grand Junction police said an armed man in The Ridges subdivision threatened to kill himself and others Wednesday night before leading police on a pursuit that ended with the man’s sport-utility vehicle flipping over a guardrail.

The man was extricated from his wrecked Jeep Liberty at the bottom of a ravine around 8:45 p.m. and taken by ambulance to St. Mary’s Hospital.

Authorities said they did not know his condition late Wednesday, and they declined to release his name.

Police spokeswoman Kate Porras said officers were called just before 8 p.m. to a domestic dispute at a home in the 300 block of Hill View Drive. According to Porras and initial dispatch reports, the man had a handgun, made suicidal threats and pointed a gun at his head and at his girlfriend at one point.

Two children were at the home at the time, Porras said.

The man left the home in a Jeep Liberty. A short time later, police believe the same man was involved in a verbal confrontation with others in the 2300 block of South Broadway, during which time the man again brandished a gun.

Initial dispatch reports indicated a 40-year-old man was waving a gun outside a home at 2340 South Broadway. Police said the man then drove west on Broadway.

Dan Watson, 63, said he watched the Jeep approach the road’s intersection with Redlands Parkway “really fast,” before attempting to turn left at the intersection.

“He couldn’t make that turn,” said Watson, who estimated the vehicle shot over the guardrail about eight feet, flipping end-over-end before slamming into the bottom of a ravine.

“It wasn’t 15 seconds later (that) the cops were right behind him,” Watson said.

Two Grand Junction officers approached the crashed vehicle with guns drawn. Dispatch reports indicated officers at first were not sure if the man was still in the Jeep or had fled the wreck.

Porras late Wednesday said a handgun wasn’t immediately found in the man’s Jeep.


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