Alleged rapist taken into custody after standoff

Posted at 12:25 PM, Apr 26, 2016
and last updated 2016-04-26 12:25:06-04

A Niagara Falls man accused of having a sexual relationship with a 13-year-old girl was arrested Friday after a tense standoff with police.

An investigation was opened after police were contacted by a relative of the teen who reported seeing inappropriate material from 44-year-old Robert Pavlisin Jr. on the girl’s phone.

Last Friday, detectives searched the home of Pavlisin’s parents, where Pavlisin lives in the basement. Pavlisin was not home at the time and when he learned of the search, he refused to return, despite family members urging him to turn himself in.

Ultimately, police found his car in the parking lot of a business on New Road and determined he was hiding in a storage building. Detectives say they talked to Pavlisin for over an hour, during which time he claimed to have a gun, before convincing him to surrender.

Police say several times during the standoff, Pavlisin stuck what looked like a gun out of a crack in the plywood he was hiding behind. After he surrendered, detectives determined it was a pellet gun he had purchased 20 minutes before the standoff began. Authorities believe Pavlisin was trying to commit “suicide by cop.”

Pavlisin was arrested and charged with second degree criminal sexual act, first degree disseminating indecent material to a minor, obstruction of governmental administration and two counts of second degree rape. Police he had a sexual relationship with the 13-year-old girl that began last December.

Detectives say Pavlisin will likely face more charges in jurisdictions outside of Niagara Falls for incidents involving the same victim.

They are also concerned Pavlisin may have additional victims. If you have any information, call 716-286-4711.