LOGAN — Jerry Gillespie has confessed to threatening to kill a woman that led to a SWAT standoff near Newton Dam earlier this week. The 47-year-old Lewiston man accepted a plea deal Tuesday to lesser charges but could still face a possible prison sentence.
Court records show, Gillespie appeared in 1st District Court Tuesday morning for a preliminary hearing. He waived his right to the hearing, instead pleading guilty to assault, amended to a class A misdemeanor; and two counts of possession of a firearm by a restricted person, a third-degree felony. As part of the agreement, prosecutors dropped the seven remaining charges against him.
On May 14, Sheriff’s deputies received a call from a woman who expressed concern about Gillespie’s erratic behavior and drug use. She also said that he had held a nail gun to her head, causing her to fear for her life. It happened in the presence of a child.
Deputies later located Gillespie’s camp trailer near Newton Dam. When they called and attempted to negotiate with the suspect, he repeated threats of suicide and wanting to “shoot it out” with law enforcement.
SWAT teams were called to the dam to help assist with the negotiations and to monitor Gillespie’s movements. Deputies were also sent to Lewiston Elementary School, where they feared he might go to try and contact family members who were there.
As law enforcement continued their phone negotiations, Gillespie began to leave the campsite. He drove toward a deputies’ checkpoint and surrendered without violence.
After his arrest, a search of Gillespie’s vehicle turned up five firearms. He later admitted to possessing marijuana and the incident involving a nail gun, but denied pushing it against the woman’s head.
During Tuesday’s hearing, Gillespie was ordered to remain in jail. He will be sentenced July 8 and could face up to five-years in prison.