GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. — A man faces an attempted murder charge after police said he intentionally drove his pickup truck into the Grand Junction Police Department's lobby Wednesday.
According to an arrest affidavit, a full-size pickup truck plowed through the front doors of the police station's public lobby at around 12:30 p.m. and came to rest after colliding with a retaining wall that separates police department employees from the public area.
The document says the man in the truck was immediately arrested and cleared by paramedics before being taken to a holding cell.
"When I arrived in the lobby, I was completely shocked and taken aback by the state of the lobby," the affidavit says.
The document says the impact pushed a wall several feet into the offices of the police service technicians and record technicians, but it stopped before hitting any of the 11 people working inside.
Police said the crash destroyed the benches where members of the public would normally sit while waiting to be helped, but no one was in the lobby at the time.
The affidavit says video footage showed no hesitation, stopping or slowing on the driver's part before the truck crashed into the lobby (click link for video).
Damage is estimated to be somewhere between $100,000 and $1,000,000.
The affidavit says records show there were at least 90 calls for service involving the suspect over the last few years where he reported "strange happenings" that turned out to be unfounded.
The document says the suspect was becoming frustrated with law enforcement and would hang up on them and swear at them over the phone.
The suspect told police he left his home and began to leave Grand Junction that morning, the affidavit says, but he realized he was being followed by several cars. He said he had become paranoid about the vehicles and began making erratic turns and turning down side streets in order to avoid them, according to the document.
He told police he drove into the lobby because he didn't want to be killed, police said. He said he knew it was "dumb" but "he knew what he needed to do in order be heard," according to the affidavit.
The man was taken to the Mesa County Jail and booked on the following charges.
- Attempted first-degree murder
- Attempted first-degree assault
- Attempted vehicular homicide - reckless driving
- Attempted vehicular assault
- Criminal mischief
- Reckless endangerment
Police said they believe the crash was an isolated incident and that there is no ongoing threat to the community, but the lobby will be closed for "an unknown period of time."
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