At 5:58pm on Thursday evening, a reporting party called 9-1-1 to report an attempted robbery that had just occurred at the Family Dollar at the corner of 30 Road and Patterson in Grand Junction. The reporting party told the dispatcher that a male subject brandished a gun while at the checkout counter of the store. The subject ultimately fled the business and no one was injured.
Nothing was taken from the store.
Officers and deputies immediately responded to the area to search for the suspect. Interviews with witnesses revealed that the suspect may have left the area in a passenger car. A possible license plate number was provided and the registered owner of the vehicle was contacted. The owner was cooperative and, through interviews, a suspect was identified. When officers attempted to contact the male suspect in the 2800 Block of Niagara Circle, he barricaded himself in the residence. A review of the male’s criminal history revealed multiple arrests and convictions for weapons related crimes, as well as an outstanding warrant for his arrest.
Phone contact was made with the male, who refused to come out of the house. Another occupant of the home was able to safely exit the house, along with a dog. The SWAT teams with the Grand Junction Police Department and the Mesa County Sheriff’s Office responded to the residence. A shelter in place was sent to 41 contacts in the immediate area. Officers gave commands over a PA system for the male to exit the residence, with which he did not comply. A search warrant for the home was signed by a judge and forced entry was made into the house, where the male was taken into custody.
The male, Nicholas Houk, age 34, was transported to a local hospital for evaluation. Once medically cleared, Houk will be remanded to the Mesa County Detention Facility for charges of Attempted Robbery and Felony Menacing. Additional charges may be pending.
This single incident required over 20 law enforcement personnel, including mutual aid from other agencies, and lasted for over six hours. While resources were deployed on this incident, an additional critical incident with a suicidal male with a gun required a heavy police presence at another location in the city. Additionally, there was a foot pursuit of a subject involved in an unrelated investigation. Patrol officers were called in early for their shifts in order to handle the significant demand of calls for service.
If you haven’t already done so, signing up for emergency alerts through the Grand Junction Regional Communication Center can ensure that you receive critical safety information when you need it most. If you don’t have a landline, you must opt in with your cell phone number in order to receive notifications. You can learn more and sign up here.