The prosecutor this month filed a notice to seek the death penalty if Shaun Patrick French is found guilty in the May 2018 case.
French, 24, is charged with aggravated murder and sex crimes against Bagshaw; French lived in Bagshaw’s Salt Lake City home for several months in 2017.
In charging documents, police wrote that French admitted to a friend that he killed Bagshaw, saying he “damn near cut her head off" when he went to discuss sex crime allegations she’d made against him.
Five days before she was killed, Bagshaw had told her mother that French had been having sex with her, starting when she was 14. According to court documents, French called Bagshaw 13 times that day. Her mother then received explicit photos of Bagshaw from a newly created social media account that Bagshaw and her mother believed French had created.
The day after Bagshaw told her mom about French, he called his brother, saying he was going to be charged with rape and wanted to cut his own throat, the charges state.
Instead, prosecutors wrote, French told a friend a few days later that he was going to Bagshaw’s home to talk to her; when he returned, he had blood on his face and hands and said he’d cut the girl’s throat, according to the court documents.
According to another friend, French was “obsessed” with Bagshaw and said he wanted to marry her. That friend told police that he had created the social media account French used to send messages to Bagshaw’s mother.
French is charged with aggravated murder and aggravated burglary, both first-degree felonies; sexual exploitation of a minor and obstructing justice, both second-degree felonies; and three counts of unlawful sexual activity with a minor and two counts of witness tampering, all third-degree felonies.
This is the second death penalty case that Gill's office is currently pursuing.
Prosecutors allege Rivera stabbed 24-year-old Vigil by a flight of stairs, before kicking and stomping him more than 70 times during the eight-minute fight.
Rivera is scheduled to go to trial in February 2020.
Nearly 50 Utahns are currently facing charges that carry the possibility of the death penalty, but prosecutors have declared their intent to seek it in only five cases, including French’s.
Utah lawmakers last debated whether to keep the death penalty in 2018, and they’re expected to discuss it again during the next legislative session.