Police ID suspect – a former UHP trooper – in custody after Clinton standoff

Michael Pope. Photo: Weber County

CLINTON, Utah, May 28, 2018 (Gephardt Daily) — Police have identified the man taken into custody after tear gas was deployed into a Clinton residence.

The man arrested is Michael Pope, Roy police officials told Gephardt Daily. He will be facing 17 charges in connection with the incident.

Pope, 46, is charged with:

  • Aggravated burglary, a first-degree felony
  • Six counts of aggravated kidnapping, a first-degree felony
  • Five counts of aggravated assault, a third-degree felony
  • Discharge of a firearm, shooting in the direction of a person, a third-degree felony
  • Three counts of domestic violence in the presence of a child, serious injury/weapon, a third-degree felony
  • Damage/interrupt communications device, a class B misdemeanor

A probable cause statement also reveals that Pope is a former law enforcement officer, and public records indicate he was a Utah Highway Patrol trooper.

According to the statement, the incident began at about 11:30 a.m. Sunday in West Haven. Pope and his wife, parents of four children, are in the process of getting a divorce, the statement said.

The parents and three of the four children were at the West Haven residence they still share when a physical assault began, with the wife repeatedly assaulted, the probable cause statement says.

To escape the assault, the wife and the three juveniles at the scene traveled to her parent’s house in Roy. Pope, who did not have permission to enter the Roy residence, entered and took out a Glock .380 handgun, the statement says.

Pope’s wife tried to shut the front door, but he pushed in, “made his way into the house and grabbed (his estranged wife) by the hair and put the gun to (her) head.” Pope also pointed the gun at his wife’s mother and father and two of the children, the statement says.

Pope’s in-laws tried to pull Pope off their daughter, and Pope pushed his father-in-law into a curio cabinet, which injured the man’s head. Pope’s wife told police that her estranged husband pointed the gun at all adults and juveniles present.

Pope’s mother-in-law tried to call 911 twice, the probable cause statement says. In both cases, which occurred in different rooms, Pope punched her in the face and destroyed the phones. Pope also stopped others who tried to call 911, the statement says.

“Michael told (his wife) again he was going to kill everyone in the house. (Juvenile) C.P. stood in front of (her), and Michael pushed C.P. to the ground holding onto C.P.’s hair.

“During the altercation, Michael Pope had the handgun in his hand while fighting with (his wife) and C.P. The firearm was discharged into the ceiling by Michael.”

The statement said of Pope that “he is former law enforcement and knows the risks of firearms. Michael later admitted to bringing the handgun into the home, threatening everyone inside with it, and firing off a round inside the home’s kitchen during a struggle with (his wife) and C.P.”

His wife “then pushed Michael out of the house while saying he was going to kill everyone in the house. Michael then left to an unknown location.”

Officials later tracked Pope to the shed of a residence, near 2800 West and 2300 North in Clinton.

Officers from Roy and Clinton police departments responded to the scene, as well as Davis County Sheriff’s Office and Layton SWAT.

Pope refused to give up, at one point asking SWAT officers to shoot him, according to the probable cause statement.

Pope was taken into custody shortly before 8 p.m. after tear gas was deployed.

Michael Pope, Photo: Weber County

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