Box Elder standoff suspect heads to state pen on previous charge

Justin Littrell is facing life in prison in regard to hostage/ standoff incident in August of 2018

BOX ELDER, S.D. – The latest on court proceedings for Justin Littrell, accused in a hostage/standoff incident in August 2018. CRIME DETAILS


Photo courtesy of the Pennington County Sheriff’s Office


Nov. 13

The suspect in this summer’s police standoff in Box Elder is heading to the state penitentiary on a previous charge.

Justin Littrell, 31, actually asked the judge in Rapid City to go to the Sioux Falls facility until his next hearing in the case, which is in early January. The previous charge was failing to appear for court in Yankton.

Littrell has pleaded not guilty to the 22 charges against him in connection with the Box Elder standoff (listed in the Sept 25 entry below).

His bond is $2 million cash.

If convicted of all charges, Littrell could face life in prison plus 270 years.

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Sept. 25

Justin Littrell now faces life in prison. Littrell stood before Judge Heidi Linngren Tuesday and entered a not guilty plea to all 22 charges he faces for a hostage/standoff incident in August 2018.


Photo courtesy of the Yankton County Sheriff’s Office

  1. Attempted first-degree murder
  2. Aggravated assault on law enforcement; or
  3. Aggravated assault on law enforcement with a deadly weapon
  4. Attempted first-degree murder
  5. Aggravated assault on law enforcement; or
  6. Aggravated assault on law enforcement
  7. Possession of controlled drug or substance with the intent to distribute (meth)
  8. Possession of controlled drug or substance with the intent to distribute (heroin)
  9. First-degree burglary
  10. Possession of a firearm by a felon
  11. Kidnapping first-degree*; or
  12. Kidnapping first-degree*
  13. Attempted kidnapping first-degree; or
  14. Attempted kidnapping first-degree
  15. First-degree burglary; or
  16. First-degree burglary
  17. Aggravated assault
  18. Aggravated assault
  19. First-degree burglary with a terroristic threat; or
  20. First-degree burglary with theft
  21. Threat of felony terrorism
  22. Felony with a firearm

*Charge listed carries a maximum of a life sentence.

Charges listed above with “;or” behind the listed item indicate Littrell can be sentenced to one charge or the other, but not both.

In addition to the charges listed above, Littrell faces three other felony charges from prior incidents. The next scheduled status hearing will be Nov. 3 at 2 p.m.

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Aug. 16

Justin Littrell, 31, is accused of shooting at Box Elder officers, holding people hostage, and engaging in a standoff with police in a home on Aug. 14.

Littrell appeared before 7th Circuit Court Judge Bernie Schuchmann on Thursday, hearing his 17 charges from the incident.

His charges include:

  • One count of attempted murder in the first degree
  • Two counts of aggravated assault on law enforcement
  • One count of possession of controlled substances with intent to distribute
  • Four counts of burglary in the first degree
  • One count of possession of a firearm by a felon
  • Two counts of kidnapping in the first degree
  • Two counts of attempted kidnapping in the first degree
  • Two counts of aggravated assault
  • One count of a threat of felony terrorism
  • One count of commission of a felony with a firearm

Littrell is being held on a $2 million cash-only bond. The state’s attorney declared him a flight risk and a “sincere danger to the community.”

The judge granted the state’s request for a “no contact” order between Littrell and a number of people.

Littrell faces up to life in prison plus 270 years. He will get a preliminary hearing within 15 days.

Littrell is wanted by Yankton authorities for failing to appear. According to Yankton County Sheriff James Vlahakis, Littrell is a habitual criminal, convicted of grand theft and second-degree burglary.

Categories: Crime, Local News, South Dakota News