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Citrus Heights police arrest suspect after firing ‘less-than-lethal’ shotgun round

Citrus Heights police
Jonathan Rykert, Citrus Heights. // Image courtesy, CHPD

Updated Aug. 20, 7:38 p.m.–
Sentinel staff report–
Police said a 32-year-old man was taken into custody with only a minor injury on Monday after officers utilized a “less-than-lethal” shotgun round while responding to a volatile incident involving the man and his grandparents.

The incident occurred shortly after 9 a.m. on Aug. 20 when police said a call was received from a man who said his adult grandson was possibly armed with a knife and was “making threats against his wife.” Police also confirmed the man had a restraining order against his grandson, identified as Jonathan Carl Rykert, who was on probation for vandalism, trespassing, resisting a peace officer, and felony evasion in a motor vehicle.

According to a news release, responding officers made visual contact with Rykert in the backyard of a residence located on the 5800 block of Northgrove Way, near San Juan Avenue. Police said the suspect made “suicidal threats while holding an ice pick to his neck,” and also had two dogs on leashes that he was using as a “makeshift shield” between himself and officers.

Rykert reportedly became more aggressive and volatile as officers tried to talk to him. He then picked up a shovel and tried to enter the house by smashing a rear sliding glass door in the rear of the home. Officers then entered the backyard and “deployed a kinetic projectile from a less than lethal shotgun,” the news release said. The Sentinel later confirmed with police that the projectile used was a bean bag round.

Police said “the deployment was successful” and Rykert was taken into custody, sustaining only a minor injury from the incident. After being medically cleared, he was booked into jail on several misdemeanor and felony charges.

Online inmate records show Rykert is charged with felony vandalism, felony threats to commit a crime resulting in gross bodily harm or death, as well as misdemeanor charges for resisting officers and willful disobedience of a court order. He is being held on $45,000 bail.

Citrus Heights Police Chief Ron Lawrence said the incident is an example of situations commonly encountered by police and commended his officers for seeking to de-escalate the incident and use a less-than-lethal option to apprehend Rykert.

“Although this is always the goal, there are times when the circumstances, including the suspect’s actions, do not afford officers the time to safely do so,” said Lawrence in Monday’s news release. “I would like to commend our officers for their exceptional work and restraint during this very dangerous call for service.”

See latest arrest logs for Citrus Heights: click here

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