Wall speaks about standoff

Sheriff says deputies did 'excellent job' in Aug. 1 incident

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Sheriff policies

Routt County Sheriff Gary Wall and Routt County Commissioners discusses changes to policies at the Sheriff's Office.

Routt County Sheriff Gary Wall and Routt County Commissioners discusses changes to policies at the Sheriff's Office.

— Routt County Sheriff Gary Wall reflected Monday on an Aug. 1 standoff that he said was "the most intense incident" he has encountered since taking office in January.

"It had the potential to be a very dangerous situation," Wall said about the 12-hour standoff with a potentially armed man on Routt County Road 43 southwest of Steamboat. The standoff resulted in the arrest of Brian Simillion, 31, on charges of felony second-degree assault and criminal mischief.

Simillion is accused of assaulting his mother and another man during an argument. Sheriff's Office Investigator Ken Klinger said that after the alleged assault, which began at about 10:30 p.m. July 31, Simillion reportedly left his mother's home for his trailer on the same property. Simillion was suspected of possessing weapons.

Wall said he and eight deputies arrived at the scene within an hour, along with Undersheriff David Bustos and other officials.

The standoff was the first incident of such magnitude since Wall began his tenure as the county sheriff, he said. Sgt. Seth Merrick was first on the scene and led the response to the incident, Wall said.

"They did an absolutely excellent job," Wall said about his staff. "It was the first incident of that type for some other people, too."

No law enforcement officers were injured during the incident. Wall said deputies considered multiple options, including using gas grenades, during the standoff.

"We had the whole arsenal, but we decided to wait him out," Wall told the Routt County Board of Commissioners. "Just because you can do something, doesn't mean you should do it."

Simillion was blocked in by three Routt County Sheriff's Office patrol cars and arrested when he tried to leave the scene. He is scheduled to appear in Routt County Court at 1 p.m. today.

Wall spoke about the incident during a meeting with the county commissioners to update Sheriff's Office activities and continue discussions about how county policies relate to Sheriff's Office policies, such as the personal use of patrol vehicles by deputies.

Wall said such use has been misinterpreted as "a blanket use." Deputies will be allowed to use patrol vehicles on personal time only if they are armed, dressed appropriately and not driving with family members, he said, in order to allow deputies to respond to emergency situations and increase law enforcement presence throughout the county.

Wall said he is still assessing his response to a letter and legal brief from the county commissioners, which asked Wall to address his approach to county policies.

"I need to have somebody look at that representing the Sheriff's Office," Wall said. "I'm sure we can work this out."

The board's letter asks for Wall's response by Aug. 17.

Pilot & Today reporter Alexis DeLaCruz contributed to this report.

Comments

id04sp 6 years, 8 months ago

Oh, Dunkalk;

Leave Gary Wall alone. There's no conspiracy. He's just running things his way, which has got to be an improvement.

Ask the financial questions to the county commissioners. They control the money, and they have the answers.

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whyquestion 6 years, 8 months ago

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"just because you can do something, doesnt mean you should do it" is this why NO ONE has been arrested for providing ALCHOHOL and WEED to the children that were killed when that OIL TANK BLEW UP??????/ are your friends in south routt involved WALL??????DO you not care about the children in South Routt????as to the standoff, thank goodness trained deputies stayed on in the sheriffs dept. by the way when will WALL GET HIS CERTIFICATION??????WHY has he missed meeting with the Routt cnty comms.before, it was his idea???? What impact on county liability insurance is there IF sheriffs employees haven't passed their PCYCHO. TEST or is this no longer a rule to be followed in his department?????why is Wall taking so long in providing the public with HIS prevention programs for drugs [replace DARE] & the ELDER WATCH programs????

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Matthew Stoddard 6 years, 8 months ago

Correct me if I'm wrong, (and I'm not defending Wall, per se) but didn't the oil tank explode near Meeker? Wasn't that particular location in Rio Blanco County and not Routt? Wouldn't that make it a Rio Blanco County Sheriff's investigation?

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corduroy 6 years, 8 months ago

yup, people can't just accept that our Sheriff handled this situation well so instead of praise, they just complain about everything else he does. WhyQuestion: how about you pick up the phone and call Gary Wall and ask him your questions. I'm sure he'd be more than willing to discuss you concerns.

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aufait 6 years, 8 months ago

Matt you are right on somethings. The oil tank blew up closer to Oak Creek than Meeker. But it would be the far western side of Rio Blanco county. It is a Rio Blanco investigation and Routt would only be assisting them. It did involve a lot of S. Routt people.

Couduroy you are right, also. There is a reason why whyquestion can not give praise to the present sheriff's office and that would be because he was one of the ones Wall fired when he took office. It is beginning to sound like sour apples Dan!

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aufait 6 years, 8 months ago

Matt you are right about some things. The accident happened outside of Oak Creek and involved S. Routt people, but it was on the far western side of Rio Blanco. Therefore it would be a Rio Blanco investigation with Routt assisting (if asked). Since it is so far from Meeker, no telling at what priority it has been placed.

Corduroy, there is a reason that whyquestion cannot accept that the Sheriff handled the situation so well, and that is he was one of the one that were let go when the present sheriff took office! Therefore, he probably doesn't feel like he can pick up the phone and discuss anything with Gary Wall.

Dan, it is starting to sound like sour apples!

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innovated 6 years, 8 months ago

aufait-so true about sour apples, pathetic, huh? Never anything positive about how healthy things are with the Sheriff's Department and the great job they all handled it at the stand off. Bravo Gary Wall and all you deputies! Ignore the negative comments. Consider the source by the continual grammatical errors. Sucks being them.

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boatski 6 years, 8 months ago

musknosumpin here is a great place to start or post the recall effort

http://petitiononline.com/

<p>PetitionOnline.com provides free online hosting of public petitions for responsible public advocacy.

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AMC 6 years, 8 months ago

It's funny (to me) how popular recalls are becoming in RC. Please do, I shall enjoy watching you fail.

Wall is a tactful Sheriff. That's why he won the election.

absentmindedcriminals@gmail.com

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Matthew Stoddard 6 years, 8 months ago

Wall isn't tactful. Wall won thru constiuents in the City, not the County. Most of the City constiuents will never use Sheriff services since they fall under the jurisdicition of the S.S. Police Department.

This still doesn't excuse Wall for his ineptitude allowing Bustos to take a company vehichle on a personal errand not just outside the county, but outside the state. It also doesn't excuse him for continuously putting off being certified. It also doesn't excuse him from the comments he's made, thumbing his nose to the County Commissioners.

No, I think a recall will go thru. It's already in the works.

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whyquestion 6 years, 8 months ago

wrong, federal land, FBI,DEA. maybe there is a reason wall hasn't been asked???????

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Matthew Stoddard 6 years, 8 months ago

Haven't tried myself, but from what I hear, Wall's "open door" policy didn't include that he'd be in the office if the door was open. I've heard (can't confirm personally) that people have a hard time asking him questions, including County Commissioners, from what I read.

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dundalk 6 years, 8 months ago

Just curious here, but what happened to the monies involved in GRAMNET and the Elderwatch programs when Wall took an axe swing at them? Where has he applied those monies?

Does anyone question his motives on firing high ranking, well paid (not a million bucks) deputies and replacing them with younger, less experienced deputies who get paid less? What happened to the monies from those salaries?

How will the County write off the expenses used when a deputy can use a county owned vehicle for personal business, while out of state? How will that affect the insurance which is on the vehicles?

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CoJustice 6 years, 8 months ago

dunkalk:. . .Your slipping, WINCHES, remember, were getting winches. We are not investing in our future (children's dare program), were not investing in our past (elderly program) were not going to fight the war on drugs, and highly unlikely not many DUIs.

What we are getting is winches! Extra liability insurance for winching, education and training of post certification for the Sheriff and Under sheriff, plus personal legal fees for the Sheriff.

I would love to see the Pilot do some numbers crunching on DUIs and Drug enforcement of years past, compared to current records since Gary Wall took office. That would be some interesting reading. Well see what our new editor is up to it.

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dundalk 6 years, 8 months ago

"Wall said he and eight deputies arrived at the scene within an hour, along with Undersheriff David Bustos and other officials."

So, has Wall felt the need to get POST certified yet? If he was at the stand-off, was he unarmed? It's my understanding that he is not yet licensed to carry a weapon, while acting in the scope of a POST certified person.

Hmmm.

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Scrapiron 6 years, 8 months ago

Kielbasy, you give new dimension to ignorance and tunnel vision. Wake UP! If stupidity and ignorance were a crime, you , Y question and a few others would be doing 99 to life. Famouse quote: "You Just can't FIX STUPID"

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