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Standoff leads to assault, weapons charges

Posted: January 1, 2012 - 1:07am

A Juneau man has been charged with assault and weapons misconduct after he allegedly shot a gun inside a bedroom where three women and a 3-year-old girl were hiding from him in fear. No one was injured, police said.

The incident prompted Juneau Police Department SWAT and negotiating teams to surround the house, a fourplex apartment in the 4400 block of Delta Drive, for about 10 hours on Thursday evening into Friday morning. The standoff ended peacefully around 6 a.m. Friday when JPD entered the apartment and arrested Ryan J. Hamley, 27.

“Why aren’t you dead? Are you scared?” Hamley had allegedly shouted at the women and girl before he fired off a shot into the bedroom wall, according to charging documents.

Hamley faces three counts of felony third-degree assault for placing the three women in fear of “imminent serious physical injury,” according to charging documents.

Two of the three women were 20 years old, police said in a release Friday. No age was given for the third woman, who was the owner of the apartment.

Third-degree assault is a class ‘C’ felony that can carry up to five years in prison.

The suspected shooter was also charged with two counts of second-degree misconduct involving weapons, a class ‘B’ felony that can carry up to 10 years.

Hamley appeared in Juneau District Court on Friday afternoon for his arraignment and first court appearance, court records show. He is currently being held at Lemon Creek Correctional Center.

Prosecutors allege the incident began with a drunken phone call. According to an affidavit filed Friday by Assistant District Attorney Angie Kemp, Hamley had texted a 20-year-old woman, who was with another 20-year-old woman, the homeowner and the homeowner’s 3-year-old daughter, and Hamley asked her to call him. When she did, she discovered he was drunk, the affidavit says. Then, they heard a “pop” sound outside the apartment that was described as a weak gunshot noise. Next, they reportedly saw Hamley stumbling towards the apartment building, and he allegedly fired another shot towards the building.

One of the women shut the door and locked it, the document says. Another one of the women then unlocked the door to see what Hamley was doing, the papers say. Hamley then allegedly entered the residence and began knocking items off tables and throwing things, it says.

The three women and the little girl went into the back bedroom to hide and locked the door.

“Hamley came down the hall and broke through the door, entered the room, and said in essence, ‘Why aren’t you dead? Are you scared?’” the affidavit states. “Hamley then fired a shot into the wall.”

At that point, two people, a 48-year-old woman and a 26-year-old man, entered the residence. The 26-year old wrestled the gun from Hamley and emptied the gun, the document says.

The three women and girl fled the apartment, ran to a neighbor’s, and called police. They were “visibly shaking and crying” when officers met them at the neighbor’s house, prosecutors say.

JPD said they received the 911 call at 7:44 p.m., and SWAT and negotiators were brought in shortly thereafter. The street was blocked off to the public, but no evacuation orders were given for the residential neighborhood.

Responding patrol officers made brief contact with Hamley when he came to the front door, but they said he went back inside to his apartment, JPD Sgt. David Campbell told the Empire early Friday morning.

Further attempts to make contact with him or the other two people inside — via telephone, bullhorn and shining lights on the house — were unsuccessful for about four hours, Campbell had said.

Then, at 3:30 a.m., the 48-year-old woman came outside to talk to police and told them Hamley and the 26-year-old who wrestled away the gun were sleeping, the affidavit states. The woman went back inside, located a magazine with four .45-caliber rounds in it and a handgun, and gave it to police, according to the document.

When questioned by police, the woman told police she had been walking with Hamley and the 26-year-old when all of a sudden Hamley took off running towards the apartment, the affidavit says.

She and the other man were standing at the bottom of the stairs at the apartment when they heard “a bang noise” and the girls screaming, the affidavit says.

She told police she saw a hole in the wall of the little girl’s room, and it went through the wall into a room, and into another wall in that room, the affidavit says.

After the other man had taken the gun away from Hamley, the woman said she asked Hamley why he did it, and that Hamley replied he was trying to kill himself, the affidavit says.

The woman made it clear that she and the 26-year-old man were never held in the apartment against their will, and that Hamley never threatened her.

The affidavit states police interviewed Hamley, and he told them in essence, “The last thing I remember before being woken up by an officer (is) drinking some Colt 45 and having a cigarette at Floyd Dryden. I do own a 1911 .45 caliber handgun. I always carry it with me.”

Court records show Hamley has had a few minor run-ins with the law this year, including provoking or taunting an officer and disorderly conduct. But he was also involved in a more serious assault case in December of 2010.

He was charged with one count of domestic violence assault for hitting his girlfriend in the face several times, grabbing her hair and throwing her in a ditch, and another count for punching her in the face. He pleaded guilty to the first count and served the maximum sentence behind bars, 180 days, for that offense. The second count was dismissed as part of the plea deal. Alcohol was a factor in that incident, court records show.

The girlfriend in that 2010 case was not one of the women involved in this current case, court records show.

• Contact reporter Emily Russo Miller at 523-2263 at emily.miller@juneauempire.com.

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