Hotel standoff with wanted suspect ends peacefully

April 12, 2019 GMT

IDAHO FALLS — A man with two warrants for his arrest was taken into custody Wednesday after a standoff at the Quality Inn and Suites, 475 River Parkway in Idaho Falls.

Justin Derek Ryan Ferguson, 28, was wanted for failure to register as a sex offender and felony probation violation, according to Bonneville County Sheriff’s Office Spokesman Bryan Lovell.

The warrants were filed within the last few weeks after Ferguson moved without informing the Probation and Parole Office in Idaho Falls. Ferguson was convicted in 2009 of rape of a female under 18.

Law enforcement received a tip Ferguson was staying at the hotel and went to detain him. According to Lovell, Ferguson refused to come out of the room and told the officers he was armed. Ferguson barricaded himself and his girlfriend in the room and threatened to harm himself.

A standoff began as law enforcement evacuated the hotel and blocked off roads near the hotel, including Lindsay Boulevard and River Parkway.

The woman with Ferguson exited the room at some point during the standoff. Lovell said it was unclear if she was held against her will.

Ferguson stopped responding to attempts at negotiation by the sheriff’s office. Because he had threatened self-harm, law enforcement decided to breach the room around 4 p.m.

Ferguson had used items in the room to barricade himself in the bathroom. Deputies deployed gas, forcing Ferguson to exit, at which point he was detained. A knife was found at the scene, but Lovell said no guns were located in the room.

“The process of this took a lot of resources and time to make sure we came to a safe resolution for everyone,” Lovell said.