Police ID suspect in Woonsocket standoff

By News Staff


Police have identified the man arrested after a standoff Wednesday at a Woonsocket apartment complex.

33-year-old Justin Bettencourt barricaded himself inside the Sayles Street apartment building after neighbors called police saying he was waving a gun in the hallway and banging on tenants’ doors.

Bettencourt was known to Woonsocket Police as suicidal and in possession of weapons, such as firearms and a cross bow, prompting police, fire, and the SWAT team to surround the building and evacuate nearby residents.

Eventually, Bettencourt opened his apartment door and allowed officers to enter which is where a struggle ensued. Police say Bettencourt pointed what appeared to be a gun at them, prompting one officer to fire a round at the suspect, missing him.

Police were able to gain control of Bettencourt, who was taken into custody and transported to Landmark Medical Center, and released to police.

Bettencourt appeared in court Thursday, charged with felony assault with a device similar to a firearm, disorderly conduct, and resisting arrest. He was released on personal recognizance.

One officer was treated for minor injuries in the struggle. The case is now being reviewed by the Attorney General’s office and the Rhode Island State Police.

© WLNE-TV 2015