Charges: Taylorsville man fired numerous rounds at SWAT officers, hit nearby cars, homes


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TAYLORSVILLE — A man accused of shooting at SWAT officers during a six hour standoff — hitting several nearby homes and cars — now faces a long list of charges.

Ben Williams, Jr., 43, of Taylorsville, was charged Monday in 3rd District Court with four counts of attempted aggravated murder, a first-degree felony; two counts of possession of a firearm by a restricted person, a second-degree felony; two counts of abuse of a vulnerable adult, a third-degree felony; and damage to a phone, a class A misdemeanor.

On April 17, Unified police received a 911 call of a domestic violence incident near 3500 West and 5300 South. On the phone, emergency dispatchers could hear a man in the background yelling, "You will die before they get here," according to charging documents.

Officers arrived to find Williams was impaired from "huffing" aerosol cans and had assaulted his parents, both in their early 70s, the charges state.

The SWAT team was called when Williams refused to come out of the house and it was learned he had access to firearms, according to the charges.

An armored Bearcat vehicle was used to transport officers to areas around the house. Williams fired several rounds at the Bearcat through his living room window, striking the vehicle, the charges state. The officer driving the Bearcat saw Williams "was firing multiple different styles and calibers of firearms" and believed Williams "was attempting to shoot and kill him," according to charging documents.

Officers fired 15 to 18 rounds of tear gas into the house and ordered Williams to surrender, but he instead began shooting at them again, the charges state.

Williams then ran to the back of his house where he began shooting at officers who were positioned outside his backyard, according to the charges. At least two officers stated they could hear bullets "whizzing" over their heads, the charges state.

After more tear gas was shot into the house, Unified police sent a remote-controlled robot into the residence. Officers used a microphone on the robot to attempt to communicate with Williams and tell him to surrender. Williams "pointed a long rifle" at the robot and stated, "it was only ending if we left, or he shot the first people to enter the house," according to the charges.

After approximately six hours, Williams surrendered. After he was arrested, police found a "loaded Ruger 10-22 semi-automatic carbine rifle with a scope and large capacity magazine" and a Mossberg 500 A 12-gauge shotgun in the house, the charges state. At least three homes and multiple vehicles surrounding Williaims' house suffered gunshot damage, according to the charges. One home was shot 11 times, the charges state.

No injuries were reported.

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Pat Reavy is a longtime police and courts reporter. He joined the team in 2021, after many years of reporting at the Deseret News and KSL NewsRadio before that.


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