After two weeks of searching for gang member fugitive Jeremiah Figueroa, 31, Vista Sheriff and a SWAT team evacuated Figueroa from a motel and arrested him Thursday night.
The nearly 4 hour-long standoff began shortly after 7 p.m. at the La Quinta Inn on the 600 block of Sycamore Ave in Vista. Sheriff’s deputies cornered Figueroa in his motel room as motel guests were evacuated.
For three hours, negotiators encouraged Figueroa to peacefully exit the room. At approximately 10:15 p.m., SWAT members ignited a flashbang, or stun grenade, into the room. Figueroa fled to the balcony, but still would not surrender.
Deputies shot him with a beanbag gun, then fired dozens of pepperballs at him. The commotion allowed the deputies to rush in and take Figueroa into custody at approximately 10:30 p.m.
Figueroa was first taken to a nearby hospital for observation.
Meanwhile, officials searched his room and found one gun. Guests and surrounding business owners were allowed back into their rooms at 10:50 after nearly 4 hours of being evacuated.
The arrest was the culmination of a two-week search for Figueroa, who was wanted on a $2 million warrant for several crimes. Law enforcement officials say he is a known gang member as well.
He is now jailed on $2.1 million bail on suspicion of attempted kidnapping, attempted robbery, attempted carjacking, assault with a semiautomatic firearm and second-degree burglary, according to the San Diego Sheriff’s inmate detail website.