Man charged after hostage situation at VA

Posted at 7:45 PM, Dec 08, 2015
and last updated 2015-12-08 21:45:10-05

The 77-year-old man accused of taking a nurse practitioner hostage at the VA Medical Center has been charged with assault.

Prosecutors said Johnie Wayne Roth, of Aurora, pulled a gun on a nurse practitioner in her office December 3.

"Investigators learned that Roth taken over the room, and pointed the gun at his head, and waived it around the room," according to the U.S. Attorney's Office. "He also had additional ammunition in his bag.  He intended to fire shots into the ceiling so that the VA Police would respond.  He did not fire a shot.  Instead, the nurse practitioner was able to call for help.  It was determined that Roth brought the gun because he wanted the VA Police to shoot him."

Prosecutors said the acting deputy chief was able to get into the room, establish a rapport with Roth and take the gun from him.

“The Veterans Administration police officers, including the acting deputy chief, showed courage in confronting the defendant, convincing him to let his hostage go and to drop his weapon,” said U.S. Attorney John Walsh.

Roth is charged with assaulting, impeding or interfering with an employee of the United States in performance of official duties and use of a deadly or dangerous weapon.

The situation lasted about 15 minutes.

No shots were fired.

Roth's family told Denver7 that Roth is a loving grandfather and husband who suffers from diabetes, dementia and depression. One family member said Roth was upset with the care he was receiving from the VA.


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