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Tuesday, January 28, 2020  Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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News >  Crime/Public Safety

Man accused of child rape arrested after standoff in Spokane Valley

UPDATED: Thu., April 25, 2019

From staff reports

Spokane County deputies arrested a man wanted on child rape charges after a standoff in Spokane Valley.

Donald A. Hegel, 38, is accused of multiple counts of child rape and child molestation in Stevens County, and a warrant was issued for his arrest, the Spokane County Sheriff’s Office reported in a news release.

Deputies responded to a home in the 400 block of South Leta Road at about 6 p.m. Wednesday in Spokane Valley to search for Hegel. After they spotted him, he fled inside the home.

Hegel refused commands to leave the house and threatened to shoot, the sheriff’s office said.

Law enforcement set off stun grenades in the home and deployed a robot that located him in a closet.

Cpl. Mark Gregory, spokesman for the sheriff’s office, said the robot determined Hegel was not armed, but he still did not leave.

After several hours, “SWAT Team members deployed 40 mm less-lethal impact munitions” from their weapons, the news release said.

“Our ultimate goal is always to have things end peacefully,” Gregory said. “But there’s a limit to that. If we can get information on what’s happening then we can make decisions from where to proceed from there.”

When he still didn’t leave, Gunnar, a K-9, was sent in, and Hegel fought “violently” with the dog, the sheriff’s office said. A second K-9 also was sent in. Eventually, the SWAT team followed and arrested him.

The hourslong standoff ended at about 11 p.m, Gregory said. Hegel was taken into custody. He was provided “medical attention” and booked into Spokane County Jail, the sheriff’s said. He was not hospitalized.

It was the second standoff in two days. On Tuesday, deputies negotiated with 41-year-old Justin Robertson for about 10 hours in St. John in Whitman County, after he allegedly stabbed his wife and abducted their 5-year-old son.

The child was returned before Robertson was killed, apparently from a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

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