Crime - Sacto 911

Man taken into custody in 15-hour standoff in Citrus Heights faces felony charge

A man who spent nearly 15 hours holed up in a Citrus Heights residence before he was taken into custody late Thursday will be charged with felony domestic battery, a weapons violation and resisting arrest, police said.

The man, identified by family members as David Wilt, 58, had refused to respond to a recorded plea from his daughter, phone calls from police negotiators and rounds of tear gas fired by SWAT officers.

Officers were called about 6:40 a.m. Thursday to the 6300 block of Trenton Way for a domestic violence call. A woman, apparently the man’s caretaker, was found at the home and removed to safety, a police information officer said.

Police said they believed Wilt, who remained inside the single-family residence, might have had a firearm.

Wilt, who was found hiding in a bathroom, was taken into custody around 10 p.m. Thursday, police said. Officials said he would be taken to a hospital for minor injuries before being booked at the Sacramento County main jail.

SWAT officers and a police dog arrived shortly before noon at the home near Arlington Heights Elementary School, not far from Auburn Boulevard and Greenback Lane. Neighbors stood well back from the home, watching the standoff.

Police fired several rounds of tear gas into the house between about 2:30 and 3:30 p.m., but Wilt did not come out of the residence. Sgt. Mike Wells said police had had some brief contact with him by phone.

Wells said the goal was to bring the standoff to an end without anyone getting hurt, and while officers sought for hours to make contact with Wilt, Wells said they didn’t want to press the issue.

The man’s youngest daughter, Meghan Wilt, 28, said her father, who suffers from bipolar disorder, was living in the home of his full-time caretaker who called police. The daughter said her father wanted to move away from the caretaker.

Meanwhile, several hours after the standoff began, the caretaker, while screaming obscenities, was placed in handcuffs and put into the back of a police car.

According to Wilt’s daughter, her father had been living in the same home with the caretaker for close to 10 years.

She said her father had a career as an engineer and once worked at McClellan Air Force Base. While he is a registered gun owner, Meghan Wilt said she was not aware that he had a gun in the home.

“This is not his character at all. My dad would not hurt anybody,” she said.

She said police recorded a message to give to her father in which she said: “We are all here for you. We love you, and we don’t want to see this end badly. Please, just come out.”

A police action at the home is out of character for Wilt, according to his daughter: “This is a man who is afraid of getting a parking ticket,” she said.

Lt. Jason Russo said the caretaker was later released and told to stay away from the scene. Russo said she had been difficult all morning.

Call The Bee’s Marissa Lang, (916) 321-1038. Follow her on Twitter at @Marissa_Jae. The Bee’s Cathy Locke contributed to this report.