Michael Gonzales, 26, is facing counts of felony aggravated assault, misdemeanor battery, malicious injury to property, and resisting and obstructing police officers after he left from the Southwest Idaho Treatment Center three times in a little more than a day’s time.
After Nampa police responded the first two times, Gonzales was cited with misdemeanors and taken back to SWITC. But after the third time he left, they kept him at the Canyon County Jail. Police said he destroyed property and threw rocks at people while he was out.
SWITC is located at 1660 11th Ave. N. in Nampa and is a state-run facility for the intellectually disabled that provides care for 25 residents. SWITC is a residential facility for assessment, training and treatment of people with developmental disabilities to help them move back into their communities – the residents are not incarcerated.
The series of interactions between Gonzales and police began around 5:15 p.m. Sunday, when police were called to a business in the 1800 block of North 20th Street for a burglary. The business is about a 2-mile walk from SWITC’s location.
Nampa Sgt. Tim Riha said Gonzales was throwing rocks and tearing up things at the business. He reportedly broke a front window. Police issued a summons for misdemeanors including malicious injury to property and unlawful entry, and took Gonzales back to SWITC.
The next response came around 4 p.m. Monday, when Gonzales was at a home near the intersection of Franklin Boulevard and Fargo Avenue. Officers said that when they found him, Gonzales was again throwing rocks. Police said one of the rocks Gonzales threw broke a window and hit a female in the head. When the woman went outside, Gonzales charged her and pushed her to the ground, authorities said.
Gonzales was cited on suspicion of battery and vandalism, both misdemeanors. He was booked and released from jail and again taken back to SWITC, Riha said.
By 7:30 p.m. Monday, Gonzales had again left SWITC, this time going to a business in the 1800 block of East Chisholm Drive, according to Riha. That’s about a 2-mile walk from the facility. A SWITC employee on scene told police that Gonzales had a piece of broken glass and was trying to stab people.
Gonzales was accused of vandalizing vehicles with rocks and refusing to get out of a vehicle, and according to a probable cause affidavit, the reporting party was a SWITC staff member who told police Gonzales had arrived on foot and was “destroying” a vehicle.
Officers pulled him out of a vehicle and arrested him. After talking to two witnesses, police said Gonzales had thrown rocks at two people and thrown the rear-view mirror from one of the witness’s vehicles. The mirror cut one man’s arm.
Gonzales was arrested on two counts of felony aggravated assault, misdemeanor battery, two counts of malicious injury to property, and resisting and obstructing.
Gonzales had been a resident at SWITC since April 2014, according to the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare. The facility is meant for treatment, not incarceration, so it has open gates and does not have the authority to lock gates. All SWITC residents are free to leave if they choose, according to the department. Per SWITC operating procedures, staff followed him and attempted to prevent him from harming himself or others.
When staff witnessed threatening behavior, staff followed protocol and immediately contacted law enforcement.
He was charged with similar crimes in early August, according to Idaho Repository records.
His next court appearance is set for 9 a.m. Tuesday; his bond is set at $100,000.