POCATELLO — An armed and dangerous local man accused of opening fire on his neighbors was arrested Monday after a lengthy standoff in south Pocatello, police said.
Brandon Straitiff, 22, of Pocatello, was arrested by Bannock County Sheriff’s Office SWAT officers around 12:20 a.m. Monday, ending what had been a six-hour standoff with law enforcement and a 48-hour-plus investigation that began following a disturbance Saturday night, Pocatello police said.
Straitiff faces four felony counts of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and an additional enhancement charge of using a firearm during the commission of a felony crime.
No one was injured during the standoff or when a pistol-wielding Straitiff shot at his neighbors on Saturday night.
The standoff began around 6:20 p.m. Sunday at the Black Cliffs mobile home park on the 6300 block of South Fifth Avenue when Pocatello police searching for Straitiff were informed by mobile home park residents that he was in one of the residences there.
Pocatello police said they tried to establish communication with Straitiff, who was alone in a friend’s mobile home, but he would not respond.
Pocatello police then called in the Bannock County Sheriff’s Office SWAT team, which arrived on the scene with the county’s Bearcat armored vehicle.
Police said the Bearcat was deployed so that the SWAT team could get close to the mobile home Straitiff occupied and try to communicate with him while SWAT officers were safe inside the armored vehicle.
But even after the Bearcat pulled up alongside the mobile home, Straitiff still would not communicate, police said.
After several hours of being unable to get Straitiff to respond, SWAT officers moved in and arrested him inside the mobile home without incident, police said. No shots were fired but police would not yet confirm whether Straitiff was armed when arrested.
Straitiff was highly intoxicated when he was arrested, police said. Straitiff was transported to Portneuf Medical Center for medical clearance before he was transported to the Bannock County Jail where he is currently incarcerated.
Police said Straitiff had a 9 mm pistol on Saturday night that he used to open fire on his neighbors after they tried to intervene during a domestic disturbance between him and his girlfriend.
That incident occurred outside of Straitiff’s mobile home in the 4300 block of Opal Drive, also in south Pocatello.
Police said when Straitiff’s neighbors tried to break up the disturbance he was having with his girlfriend, he got into a physical confrontation with one of the neighbors.
Straitiff then entered his mobile home, came out with his pistol and opened fire on his neighbors, police said.
During the incident on Saturday night, Straitiff pointed the gun directly into the face of one of the female witnesses and told the woman he was going to kill her, police said. The woman pleaded with Straitiff not to shoot her because she was a mother, police said.
Straitiff also pointed the gun toward his own head and threatened to take his own life during the incident, police said.
No one was struck by the gunfire, but Straitiff did bite one male neighbor during the physical disturbance. The male neighbor was checked by responding emergency medical personnel but did not require hospitalization, police said.
Straitiff’s neighbors contacted police but Straitiff and his girlfriend got in his car and drove away before officers arrived.
Pocatello police said they were in communication with Straitiff’s girlfriend on Sunday and she was safe and unharmed.
Straitiff appeared in front of 6th District Judge Scott Axeline on Monday where he was arraigned on the four felony charges against him.
The Bannock County Prosecutor handling the case, Brian Trammell, requested a bond amount of $50,000. Axeline set bond at $40,000.
Straitiff has been appointed an attorney with the Bannock County Public Defenders Office, Dave Martinez, to represent him.
If convicted of the four felony aggravated assault charges, Straitiff faces up to 20 years in prison and $20,000 in fines. If convicted of the enhancement charge, his sentence could be extended by up to 15 additional years in prison.
A hearing to determine if there is enough evidence to take Straitiff’s case to trial has been set for June 24.