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Ogden gang member takes plea deal for 2011 standoff

Published February 16, 2013 1:01 am

Courts • Jason Valdez posted on his Facebook wall during the overnight stand-off with a SWAT team.
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2013, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

An Ogden gang member who shot himself after an overnight standoff with police in June 2011 will spend at least five years in prison.

Jason James Valdez, 38, pleaded guilty last week to attempted aggravated murde and possession of a dangerous weapon by a restricted person.

Valdez was sentenced to five years to life for the attempted murder charge, and one to 15 years in prison for the weapon charge. Second District Judge Ernie Jones ruled the sentences could run concurrently.

As part of a plea deal, one count of aggravated kidnapping was dismissed. A penalty for using a dangerous weapon also was dismissed, according to court documents.

Valdez, a known Nortenos gang member, engaged an Ogden SWAT team in an overnight stand-off from a hotel room at the Western Colony Inn, 234 24th St., on June 19, 2011.

From inside the room, Valdez used his smart phone to send several updates to his Facebook friends indicating that he was in a stand-off with the "shady-azz" Ogden police, and that he had a hostage with him.

Friends and family members posted words of support or caution on his wall during the stand-off.

"Everyones comments mean alot," Valdez posted. "But how this ends is on the cops now. And my HOSTAGE as they call her is perfectly fine and holding it down wit me."

Ogden police said the incident began a day earlier when officers sought to serve a felony drug warrant on the man near the motel. The man fled, running into one of the motel's rooms and refused to come out. As officers tried to negotiate, they learned that a woman also was inside the room.

Eventually, the SWAT team forced entry into the room, while Valdez fired at them several times. Eventually, Valdez shot himself in the chest. Officers never fired their weapons.

jmiller@sltrib.com

Twitter: @jm_miller