CRIME, POLICE + COURTS

West Valley police safely arrest suspect with homemade explosives

Jul 29, 2021, 2:44 PM | Updated: Dec 29, 2022, 12:09 pm
15-year-old shot...
West Valley City Police are investigating the shooting of a 15-year-old on Tuesday afternoon, July 26, 2022, near Hillsdale Park. (Steve Griffin, Deseret News)
(Steve Griffin, Deseret News)

WEST VALLEY CITY — The West Valley City Police Department says it was able to take a man with homemade explosives into custody Wednesday night. 

According to arrest documents, officers were called to an area near the Hunter Library around 8 p.m. Wednesday after receiving reports of a man carrying what looked like a bomb. Once on the scene, officers locked down and evacuated the library, then started talking with the 29-year-old suspect, Kyle Amos Winn. 

“When they approached him, he would not comply with officers’ commands,” said West Valley Police Department spokesperson Roxanne Vainuku. “Then these officers were able to create some distance which gave them time to safely communicate with him.”

Using their crisis intervention training, Vainuku said officers were able to negotiate with Winn. After some time, they were able to take him into custody without incident.

“They worked very hard to establish rapport with the suspect, and ultimately, they were successful in being able to take him safely into custody,” said Vainuku. 

Officers find homemade explosives

Once Winn was in custody, officers found knives, a sword, a makeshift gun and multiple homemade bombs.

Vainuku said a bomb squad likened the bombs to hand grenades. It’s unclear what Winn planned to do with the weapons and homemade explosives, but Vainuku said officers did everything right. 

“This is one of those successful outcomes that happen all the time, but you don’t get to hear about them very often,” Vainuku explained. “Their actions de-escalated this situation and really are the reason everyone went home safely.” 

Family members told police Winn has a history of mental illness, according to arrest records. Winn was booked on several charges. The investigation is ongoing. 

If you, or someone you know, are experiencing a mental health crisis, help is available 24/7 on the Utah Crisis Line at 800-273-TALK. 

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