A Nampa man with a history of violent behavior took his own life after a two and a half hour standoff with Boise Police on Thursday, January 13. John David Gillenwater, 24, died a from the single self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head, but police are still looking for a second man who could be connected to the failed armed robbery leading up to the standoff.
AT 8:44 a.m., officers responded to the report of repeated gunfire on Glendale St., just west of Veteran's Memorial Park. Witnesses said that Gillenwater had discharged multiple shots in and around a home before fleeing the scene.
As backup arrived, however, officers received another call from nearby Bell Lane, where Gillenwater was caught trying to squeeze through a doggy door. The house's inhabitant, not one to allow inter-species door usage, soon convinced Gillenwater to back out of the flap--a request reportedly accentuated by the growl of the Pit Bull who usually frequents the door--and he was soon cornered by police in a breezeway along the size of the home.
Over the next two and a half hours, while officers worked to evacuate nearby residents, Gillenwater engaged in desperate negotiations with his besiegers. His version of negotiating, however, involved threatening to kill himself and, once, aiming a handgun at an officer. The officer fired a shot in response, but it did not hit Gillenwater.
However, at approximately 11:25 a.m., officers heard another shot, this time from Gillenwater shooting himself. He was transported to a nearby hospital, where he died on Friday.
On Monday, January 17, the Idaho Press-Tribune reported that Gillenwater had also been the subject a bizarre run-in with police in November of 2004 when he was pulled over for erratic driving. A drug dog on the scene had alerted officers to the possibility of illicit materials in the car--in this case, some drug paraphernalia. However, upon opening Gillenwater's jockey box, officers also discovered a mysterious explosive device consisting of black powder covered in ball bearings. Gillenwater, naturally, had no idea how the bomb had found its way into his car, but was nonetheless arrested for possession of an explosive device and drug accouterments.
Police are still looking for a second man wanted for questioning in connection to the robbery. He is described as a beefy white male, bald and wearing sweats. Just like George Costanza, except toting a sawed-off shotgun and driving a white jeep. Anyone with information is urged to call Crime Stoppers at 343-COPS.