Wanting to die “in a blaze of glory,” armed man forces Shasta College lock-down

REDDING — A suicidal man who was armed with multiple firearms and told officials he wanted to “go down in a blaze of glory” was hospitalized for a mental health evaluation after a Sheriff’s hostage negotiator managed to calm the subject and convinced him to exit his parked vehicle, where he had been pointing a gun at himself and threatening suicide.

The dangerous incident happened this afternoon, Tuesday, Nov. 26, on Old Oregon Trail near Shasta College. Although the school is out of session for Thanksgiving break, the college still had staff and others at the campus at the time, and administrators were asked to lock the school down until the situation was safely resolved.

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Today’s ordeal began around 3 p.m. when SHASCOM emergency dispatchers received a 911 call reporting that a man, later identified as Vincent Siaz, was parked in his truck while armed with a gun and threatening suicide, Shasta County Sheriff’s Patrol Operations Sgt. Gonzalez later reported.

Deputies who responded to the area found Siaz inside his pickup truck, which was parked in a dirt lot at the corner of Collyer Rd. and Old Oregon Trail.

Despite soon being surrounded by deputies, Siaz refused the officials’ repeated commands to exit his vehicle.

Based on the location of the incident and its proximity to the nearby college, deputies requested assistance from California Highway Patrol, Redding Police Department, and Cal Fire. Deputies also called for the closure of several nearby roads and requested Shasta College go onto lock-down as a precautionary measure.

As the armed standoff continued, a deputy with the Shasta County Sheriff’s Hostage Negotiation Team called Siaz on his cellular phone “and began trying to de-escalate the situation and talk him out of the truck,” explained Gonzalez.

During the phone call, Siaz told the deputy he was armed with an 8mm rifle and wanted to “go down in a blaze of glory,” according to the Sgt.

At around 3:34 p.m., after several minutes of negotiations, the deputy talking to Siaz convinced the suicidal man to exit his truck, at which time he was safely detained without further incident.

During a subsequent search of Siaz’ vehicle, deputies located an 8mm rifle as well as ammunition for the rifle on the passenger seat next to where Siaz had been seated. Deputies also found a semi-automatic handgun in the cab of the truck as well as two more rifles in the bed of the truck.

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Based on their investigation, deputies determined Siaz posed a danger to himself and others and transported him to an area hospital to undergo a mental health evaluation, according to Gonzalez; who did not specify if Siaz faced any criminal charges related to the incident.

Anyone with further information about this incident is encouraged to contact Shasta County Sheriff’s Office at (530) 225-3700. Callers can refer to incident file number 19S043426 and can remain anonymous.


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Contact the writer: trevor.rcns@gmail.com

Trevor Montgomery, 48, moved in 2017 to the Intermountain area of Shasta County from Riverside County and runs Riverside County News Source and Shasta County News Source. Additionally, he writes or has written for several other news organizations; including Riverside County based newspapers, Valley News, (the now defunct) Valley Chronicle, Anza Valley Outlook, and Hemet & San Jacinto Chronicle; as well as Bonsall/Fallbrook Village News in San Diego County and Mountain Echo in Shasta County.

Trevor spent 10 years in the U.S. Army as an Orthopedic Specialist before joining the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department in 1998. He was medically retired after losing his leg, breaking his back, and suffering both spinal cord and brain injuries in an off-duty accident. (Click here to see segment of Discovery Channel documentary of Trevor’s accident.)

During his time with the sheriff’s department, Trevor worked at several different stations; including Robert Presley Detention Center, Southwest Station in Temecula, Hemet/Valle Vista Station, Ben Clark Public Safety Training Center, and Lake Elsinore Station; along with other locations.

Trevor’s assignments included Corrections, Patrol, DUI Enforcement, Boat and Personal Water-Craft based Lake Patrol, Off-Road Vehicle Enforcement, Problem Oriented Policing Team, and Personnel/Background Investigations. He finished his career while working as a Sex Crimes and Child Abuse Investigator and was a court-designated expert in child abuse and child sex-related crimes.

Trevor has been married for more than 29 years and was a foster parent to more than 60 children over 13 years. He is now an adoptive parent and his “fluid family” includes 13 children and 16 grandchildren.

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