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Summit County SWAT ‘rescues’ woman, but now question her story


By Bob Mims

The Salt Lake Tribune

First published Dec 27 2013 01:12PM
Updated Dec 28, 2013 03:22PM

Investigators say they have reason to doubt a woman’s initial claims that she was being held against her will by a fugitive when Summit County Sheriff’s Office SWAT officers raided her home in Oakley.

Sheriff’s Detective Capt. Justin Martinez said that the incident began when the sheriff’s major crimes warrant division learned late Thursday that the 46-year-old fugitive — sought for violating terms of his bail release on pending felony and misdemeanor drug counts — was hiding out in the home.

Next, deputies learned that a 43-year-old woman, who also has a criminal drug history, was at the residence and had called two acquaintances in the Salt Lake Valley, claiming she had been abducted by the male fugitive.

"[She] said she believed she was drugged by [the male and] at one point tried to escape, but was tackled by [him] and dragged back into the residence," Martinez stated on Friday.

The woman’s telephone then went dead and the two recipients of her calls notified the sheriff’s office in Park City. Deputies obtained a search warrant and the SWAT unit was dispatched to the home about 9 p.m. Thursday, setting up a perimeter and then using loudspeakers to demand the male’s surrender.

"After a few minutes, [the woman] came to the front door and exited the residence. She appeared to be under the control of an unknown substance and she was not wearing any shoes," Martinez said.

Under questioning, the woman allegedly told deputies that the male fugitive had left the house about an hour earlier, but SWAT officers clearing the home found him hiding under a bed.

"Further investigation indicated that [the woman] may have not been held entirely against her will," Martinez said on Friday.

She was booked into Summit County Jail in lieu of $6,523 bail on suspicion of harboring a fugitive, while the man was booked on warrants connected to his earlier charges. He was being held on $600,000 bail.

remims@sltrib.com

Twitter: @remims

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