WCSO: Squatter with guns arrested after overnight standoff

Crime

Richard Joseph Castaneda said he was burning trash inside the house to stay warm, according to deputies

A booking photo of Richard Joseph Castaneda; a rifle found inside a house where he’s accused of trespassing in Aloha, Aug. 13, 2020. (Washington County Sheriff’s Office)

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — An overnight standoff between deputies and a squatter with guns in Aloha ended with an arrest, officials said.

Washington County deputies and firefighters went to a home at the corner of SW 174th Avenue and SW Arborcrest Way just before 11 p.m. on Wednesday. They were responding to calls from neighbors who reported a fire and explosions from inside the house, according to the Washington County Sheriff’s Office.

Officials arrived to find a vacant home boarded up with several “no trespassing” signs around the property. They quickly retreated when someone threw an empty wine bottle and part of a shotgun at a deputy, WCSO said.

About 30 minutes later, deputies went into the home and found a man who refused to come out from the crawlspace he was hiding in. Deputies said the man told them he planned to stay there all night. Deputies also found multiple guns and ammunition, including an AR-15 style rifle in a closet with two loaded magazines.

Officials got out of the house and called specialized teams for backup. The man inside — identified as Richard Joseph Castaneda of Beaverton — was safely arrested at about 4 a.m.

The 34-year-old told deputies he was burning garbage inside the house to stay warm, according to WCSO. He was booked into the Washington County Jail on charges of reckless burning, attempted assault on a public safety officer, criminal trespass with a firearm and felon in possession of a firearm.

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