One Dead After SWAT Standoff in Clearfield


CLEARFIELD, Utah (ABC4 Utah)- One suspect is dead after an early morning SWAT standoff in Clearfield.

Officials say it all started just after 11:30 p.m. Tuesday when a Clearfield officer stopped a vehicle that was reported stolen on July 31st.

That’s when police say the driver, a 31-year-old Benjamin Heaton from Layton, fled the scene and climbed to the roof of a shed in the backyard of a home on Fern Dr.

Layton SWAT responded around 2:30 a.m. and make contact with the suspect.

Heaton was reportedly armed and fired several shots from the roof.

“Throughout the negotiations the male would not comply with officers and he elevated the situations by shooting rounds off from his handgun,” said Lt. Kelly Bennett with Clearfield Police.

Witnesses at a nearby apartment gathered outside to watch the standoff just a few yards from where they lived.  They clearly saw Heaton on the roof.

“He kept like going on the lower part and then leaning over the top part telling them not to move,” said Sara Statler.

Another person could hear his conversations with police.

 “He was very aggressive in saying that he could see them and not to come closer and calling them the N-word, swearing up a storm,” said Samantha Pitts.

She said he told police that he had outstanding warrants and didn’t want to go to jail.

“He kept saying he wants to see his son and he wants water and he wasn’t going to come down because he was going to go to jail,” said Pitts.

Lt. Bennett said they continued negotiations with Heaton despite being fired upon.  But he said the threats became worse.

“At one point he said he was going to kill and officer. shots were fired again,” said Lt. Bennett. “The shots were fired at the officers and the officers returned firing shooting at the suspect.”

Heaton died at the scene. 

One witness who did not want to be identified recorded the standoff prior to the shooting.  He said Heaton admitted to having a gun.

“He told police don’t come near him because I’m packing,” the man told Good 4 Utah.

In his recording, it is clear that even Heaton’s family warned police that he had a gun.  They kept pleading with police not to shoot him. 

“They even had Heaton’s son with them,” said the man.

Police also arrested 21 year old Charlene Johnson of Ogden.  Lt. Bennett said she was booked into the Davis County jail for her involvement of the stolen vehicle.

Dispatch says the home on either side of the standoff have been evacuated as a precaution.

Lt. Bennett said the officers are now on paid administrative leave pending an investigation.

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