A convicted felon with a half dozen pending cases in Montezuma County Combined Courts was arrested Sunday in Durango after a two-hour standoff with police.
Durango police were notified by the Cortez Police Department early Sunday that 35-year-old John I. Finocchiaro was possibly staying at a motel in Durango, according to a post on the agency’s Facebook page.
Cmdr. Ray Shupe with the Durango Police Department did not immediately return phone calls Monday afternoon seeking comment, according to the Durango Herald. Finocchiaro was considered armed and dangerous, the Facebook post said.
Finocchiaro, who had seven pending cases in Montezuma County, was arrested Feb. 3 in Dolores for possession of a Hi-Point 9 mm rifle.
Four days after the arrest, Finocchiaro was scheduled for a sentencing hearing on a January 2018 felony menacing case, but he didn’t show up. Public defender Kenneth Pace informed the court that Finocchiaro was being treated for suicidal ideation at the Crossroads at Grandview facility at Mercy Regional Medical Center.
Durango police responded to the motel, which is not named in the Facebook post, and confirmed Finocchiaro was renting a room there.
“For the safety of other motel guests, the adjacent rooms were evacuated,” Durango police posted.
Officers then contacted Finocchiaro, who refused to come out and barricaded himself in the room, the Durango Herald reported.
“Officer Lowande made contact by phone with Finocchiaro and negotiated with him for almost 2 hours, at which time Finocchiaro decided to peacefully surrender himself to the custody of the officers,” police posted.
Finocchiaro is facing a slew of charges in his seven pending court cases, including several felony menacing charges, several felony bail bond violations and possession of a controlled substance.
According to The Journal archives, Finocchiaro has been convicted of multiple felonies dating to 2002, when he was convicted of assault with a deadly weapon. In 2012, he was convicted of felony menacing for use of force with a deadly weapon.
The Dolores resident in 2013 provoked the Montezuma County Sheriff’s Office to lock down Dolores High School. Law enforcement saw Finocchiaro walking near the school after they had tried several days to locate him on a Colorado Department of Corrections no-bond warrant for parole violation.
In 2014, the felon was sentenced to 18 months in prison after pleading guilty to a firearms charge.
Most recently, Montezuma County Sheriff’s Office on Feb. 3 arrested Finocchiaro in Dolores for felon in possession of a firearm. According to the incident report, Finocchiaro became agitated as officers placed him in a patrol vehicle, and he slammed his head against the cage.
While in the patrol vehicle, the incident report states, Finocchiaro claimed he was having a heart attack. Medics were called, but a deputy transported him to the hospital because Finocchiaro continued to slam his head.
He was medically cleared at Southwest Memorial Hospital and then resisted deputies again. A deputy struck Finocchiaro with his knee to get him in a patrol vehicle.
They recovered a Hi-Point 9 mm rifle and nine rounds of 9 mm ammunition wrapped in a sweatshirt. Possession of a firearm by a previous offender if a Class 4 felony.
Finocchiaro also had an encounter with deputies the day before that firearm arrest. He was cited for disorderly conduct after arguing with a woman at the Rio Grande Southern Hotel in Dolores. An MCSO incident report states deputies had been called to the hotel twice in recent days for the same complaint.
On Feb. 20, Finocchiaro is scheduled to appear in Montezuma County court on four cases. The next day, he is scheduled to appear in 22nd Judicial District Court on three other cases.
Jonathan Romeo of the Durango Herald and Sean Dolan of the Cortez Journal contributed to this article.