A reportedly suicidal woman was arrested early Thursday morning after a 10-hour standoff with police at the Pine Cone Acre Motel in South Lake Tahoe.
Auburn police received a report of a distraught and possibly armed woman, Jennifer Lynn Trezona, 49, of Sacramento, leaving an Auburn home after a family disturbance about 5:15 p.m. Wednesday, said Auburn Police Chief John Ruffcorn.
Using Trezona’s cell phone to trace her movements, Auburn police determined Trezona was in the Lake Tahoe area and told South Lake Tahoe police to be on the lookout for her and her vehicle, Ruffcorn said.
About 6:30 p.m., South Lake Tahoe patrol officer Ric Martinez and Sgt. Jeff Reagan spotted Trezona’s vehicle at the Pine Cone Acre Motel at 735 Emerald Bay Road, according to a statement from South Lake Tahoe police.
After police arrived, John Myers, a night manager at the Pine Cone Acre Motel and carrier for the Tribune, said he attempted to contact Trezona in her hotel room. When he opened the door, Trezona had a .40 caliber pistol pointed directly at him, Myers said. He immediately shut the door as additional law enforcement agencies were called to the scene.
California Highway Patrol officers and El Dorado County sheriff’s deputies evacuated tenants of the motel, who would have been in danger if any shots were fired, according to the statement from the city. Police also blocked traffic on Highway 89 between 10th and 11th streets while a command post was established, according to the statement.
The SLTPD Crisis Negotiation Team, SWAT team and South Lake Tahoe Fire Department medics were staged nearby to provide help in the event of a shooting. Crisis negotiators contacted Trezona via telephone and, though she cut off communication several times, they were able to maintain communication with her throughout the night.
Myers overheard Trezona say she was a single mother of four children and was distraught because she had recently lost her job as a nurse. He said he felt bad for Trezona, who seemed like she was “just having a bad day.”
“She just thought she didn’t have any options,” Myers said.
According to police, Trezona repeatedly threatened to shoot officers. Though she kept the curtains to the room closed, officers reportedly saw her holding the handgun.
During the standoff, SLTPD detectives secured an arrest warrant for Trezona, listing felony charges of brandishing a firearm at a peace officer and for threatening officers.
At 5 a.m., Trezona walked out of her motel room without the gun and surrendered. She was booked into El Dorado County Jail in South Lake Tahoe. She remained in custody Thursday afternoon. It is unknown whether she has an attorney.
No shots were fired and no one was injured during the standoff.
Myers said he was impressed with the police crisis negotiator’s ability to keep the situation calm for so many hours.
“To be honest with you, I did not think it was going to end well,” Myers said.