November 12, 2019

Mike Tanner

KWAT Radio News


SUMMIT, S.D.—A Summit man was arrested Monday afternoon following a standoff that caused the local school to go into “lockdown” mode.


Roberts County Sheriff Barry Hillestad tells KWAT News it began when a woman called 9-1-1 to report that she’d been, “assaulted and thrown to the ground” by the male suspect.


Deputies responded to 510 Pine Street in Summit, a half block from the school, where the man was inside the residence with his nine year-old son.


Hillestad says deputies were unable to make contact with the man using a cell phone, P-A system, and by pounding on the door.


He says the suspect had made comments earlier to the victim that he was, “not going to go to jail” and there were known to be handguns and rifles in the home.


Hillestad says at that point, he called in more manpower from the Grant County Sheriff’s Office, and officers with Game, Fish and Parks, who were already in the area.


He also contacted an agent with the South Dakota Division of Criminal Investigation and a negotiator with the Watertown Police Department.


Authorities were eventually able to make contact with the suspect via cell phone, and he surrendered peacefully at 12:07 p.m., or more than three hours after the initial call was made.


The son also came out of the home into the waiting arms of his grandfather.


The suspect, 44 year-old James Brian Thurman, was arrested for simple assault domestic.


Hillestad says at no time were any shots fired, and there were no injuries.