K9 finds suspect hiding in attic during SWAT standoff in Davis County

Posted at 11:50 AM, Feb 05, 2016
and last updated 2016-02-05 23:23:43-05

CLINTON, Utah - A SWAT situation in Clinton was resolved after more than 9 hours Friday after officers entered the residence and a K9 found the suspect hiding in the attic under some insulation.

A Fox 13 viewer in the area said the standoff started at about 9 a.m. in the area of 2850 West and 1400 North.

Davis County authorities said things began when police spotted Chase Venstra, who was wanted on several outstanding warrants including for charges of domestic violence, assault and stalking.

The man fled inside when officers saw him, and he refused to exit the residence.

Chief Bill Chilson of the Clinton Police Department says Venstra made statements indicating he wouldn't be coming out peacefully.

"He made the statement that he wouldn’t go back to jail. Under those circumstances we do what we have to do and we called out SWAT," he said.

Police say when SWAT entered the home they found guns, ammunition, and some grenades.

"So, as another precaution, that's the reason for the robot. And now they believe he could possibly be armed," Chilson said during the standoff.

That robot had searched at least two rooms of the residence as of 5 p.m. Just after 6 p.m., officers entered the residence, and a K9 located Venstra hiding in the attic underneath some insulation.

"He had buried himself under the insulation, and talk about being patient and not doing any heavy breathing, because the SWAT guys said you couldn’t hear a thing," Chilson said.

At that point, there was nowhere to go.

"They had to take him into custody, but they said there wasn’t a major fight," Chilson said. "I think he realized he was done for."

It was a far cry from a normal Friday for neighbors like Daria Hulse.

"It was a little unnerving, pretty scary," Hulse said. "I had my 4-year-old granddaughter in there."

However, the community was grateful for the peaceful conclusion.

"They kept us informed of what was going on, they were here right away, very quickly, and kept the neighborhood safe and I’m grateful for that," Hulse said.

While there were weapons inside the home, the man did not have any weapons on his person when arrested.

Police said while the man did not surrender, he was taken into custody without much of a fight. There were no injuries reported.