Gillette Man Faces New Charges Following Stand-off With Police Last Week

David Lass
David Lass

A Gillette man is back in custody on new charges following a stand-off with police last week.

David Lass, 36, is being held on a $150,000 cash surety bond after his subsequent arrest on Oct. 11 for hit and run, animal cruelty and taking a big game animal without a license, according to an affidavit of probable cause filed in the Circuit Court of the Sixth Judicial District on Oct. 13.

The week prior, Lass was charged with multiple counts of reckless endangerment after a 7-hour standoff with police on Oct. 6 as reported in an earlier story by County 17.

The latest charges stem from an incident early Sunday morning, in which Lass allegedly hit an antelope on Garner Lake Road while driving erratically in the ditch and on the sidewalk.

Video surveillance supplied by witnesses who reported being woke by squealing tires, captured Lass and his passenger, later allegedly identified as Frank John, stopping and exiting a white Ford pickup on the side of the road, grabbing something from the shoulder and throwing it in the back of the vehicle, per the affidavit.

Evidence at the scene – including tire marks on the sidewalk and a sideview mirror next to a broken road sign – further supported the eyewitness account. A vehicle registration belonging to Darcyne Lass was also reportedly found on the ground near the broken sign and tire tracks, per the affidavit.

Campbell County Sheriff’s Office (CCSO) deputies traced the vehicle to Wyoming Downs, where earlier in the night Lass had been arrested by the Gillette Police Department on other charges. GPD had found the badly wounded antelope in the back of the pickup and dispatched the animal.

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When contacted by deputies, Lass reportedly stated that a female driving his truck had hit the antelope on the way from Boot Hill Legendary Nightclub and Sports Bar to the former Jake’s Tavern, now the Axe House, on S. Highway 59. Once struck, Lass said that he and John allegedly asked her to turn the vehicle around to retrieve the injured animal before heading to Wyoming Downs as Jakes was closed, court documents state.

When questioned about the tire marks in the ditch and erratic driving, Lass reportedly said that the female “was a bad driver.” He also allegedly denied having intentionally tried to hit the antelope, per the affidavit. Lass further told the deputy that he had grabbed some boulders “to finish the antelope off,” but instead decided to leave it there before entering the bar. Lass also allegedly told deputies that he believed the antelope had broken the sideview mirror after being hit and was reportedly surprised to learn they’d also hit a sign, per the affidavit.

When deputies contacted John, who was at the Campbell County Detention Center on unrelated charges, John initially denied hitting the antelope and street sign, claiming he’d been picked up by Lass after the accident but eventually relented, court documents state, admitting that he and Lass were the only two occupants in the vehicle and that Lass had been driving.

When questioned, the female confirmed that she had not been with Lass that night but instead was home with her children.

Lass is currently being held at the Campbell County Detention Center and is scheduled to appear in the Circuit Court of the Sixth Judicial District for a preliminary hearing on Oct. 23, followed by a bond revocation hearing on Oct. 26.