HALL COUNTY, Ga. - A tense standoff at a Gainesville motel ended peacefully when a man surrendered to police about an hour after officers said he fired a shot inside his room.
Police have identified the man as 31-year-old Justin Talton, of Gainesville. Originally, they said he was a bounty hunter but later said he used to work for a bounty hunter company about a year ago.
Worried family members called police around 9:45 a.m. Tuesday asking them to check on Talton. When they did, they saw he had several weapons in his room, so they pulled back and set up a perimeter around the Motel 6 on E.E. Butler Parkway at Monroe Drive.
Mindy Stephens and her family lived in the room right across the pool from where police were talking with Talton. She saw some of the negotiations before police evacuated them.
"When I first saw him, he didn't have a shirt on," said Stephens. "He had both hands in the air, and then I saw him put both hands down, and it did look like he had a gun in his right hands."
Billy Sewell and his family lived just three doors down from Talton. He heard the gunshot.
"There was a gunshot," said Sewell. "And then the officers said, 'Shots fired! Shots fired!'"
Moments later, Sewell said he got a phone call from police.
"A detective got on the phone and said, 'Are you dressed?' And I said yes," said Sewell. "He goes, OK, in about two minutes, I'm getting y'all out of there.' And probably 30 seconds later, there was a bang on the door, and he says, 'Get out, now!'"
Police finally convinced Talton to surrender at about 12:30 p.m. They took him to a local hospital for evaulation. Once released, he will be taken to the Hall County Jail where he will face reckless conduct and criminal damage charges. Other charges are pending.