Prosecutors on Tuesday charged a La Crosse felon whose arrest was preceded by a seven-hour standoff with police last week with attempted homicide.

Damon Taylor, 35, was charged in La Crosse County Circuit Court with attempted first-degree intentional homicide with use of a dangerous weapon as a repeat offender. Co-defendant Ontario Lowery, 37, is charged with attempted first-degree intentional homicide as party to the crime.

Taylor also was charged with possession of a firearm by a felon, failure to comply with an officer’s attempt to take a person into custody, theft, disorderly conduct and possession of methamphetamine and drug paraphernalia, all as a repeat offender. He threatened a man with a gun on Jan. 24 and stole a gun from an unlocked van in early March, according to the complaint.

At 5:38 p.m. Wednesday, the La Crosse Police Department’s tactical team was preparing to search Lowery’s apartment at 2612 S. 17th St. for Taylor, who was wanted on a probation warrant, when investigators watching the building saw Jon-Lazaire Burch and Trevongh Martin arrive, according to police reports.

Taylor shot Burch in the calf, and Martin returned fire before both men fled, according to police reports. Martin, arrested after a short foot pursuit, told police they went to the house to buy marijuana. Burch said they were there to collect $1,000 he gave Lowery for rent.

Burch ran to Pizza King. He was treated at Gundersen Health System and released.

Martin, 21, of Mount Horeb, Wis., was charged with possession of a firearm by a felon and carrying a concealed weapon, both as a repeat offender.

Lowery also fled after the shooting, and police arrested him at 15th Street and Castle Place. He told investigators he was spooked by what he thought was the sound of firecrackers, reports stated.

Police tried to coax Taylor from the residence using negotiations, a robot and tear gas until about 12:20 a.m. Thursday, when they found him hiding in a bathtub and arrested him without incident. Officers found a loaded stolen gun hidden under the stove.

Taylor told police “dudes” shot at him and that Lowery returned fire, according to reports. He had meth in his possession.

All three men are on supervision and jailed on $10,000 cash bonds. The judge continued their cases until Thursday to give the public defender’s office time to find attorneys.


Anne Jungen covers law enforcement and the criminal justice system in La Crosse County. She joined the Tribune reporting staff in December 2005. You can contact her directly at or 608-791-8224.

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