A Utah man who came upon his neighbor assaulting a woman and shot him to death will not be prosecuted.
Jeremy Sorensen, 26, was killed on June 3 in front of his apartment at 260 E. 500 North in Provo. The 22-year-old shooter told police he came upon Sorensen beating a woman; he pulled his gun and ordered him to stop; and that he fired when Sorensen moved toward him “aggressively.”
“We do not believe that the facts and relevant law support filing any criminal charges in this matter,” said Utah County Attorney David O. Leavitt in a statement,
According to witnesses, Sorensen was fighting with an 18-year-old woman and “stomping on her head” when his 22-year-old neighbor drove up, pulled over and got out his gun, according to police. The man warned Sorensen he would shoot him if he did not stop attacking the woman. The man told police Sorensen came toward him “aggressively” even after he threatened to shoot; the neighbor then fired two shots at Sorensen when he was 6 to 10 feet away.
Sorensen died shortly thereafter at a hospital.
According to the Utah County attorney’s office, “Admissible evidence would not prove beyond a reasonable doubt that laws were violated. Therefore, this office is declining prosecution relative to this incident.” Leavitt said that he came to that conclusion after his staff “carefully and thoroughly reviewed the evidence, including reports, interviews, recordings, and requests for additional information.”
Shortly after the shooting, Sorensen’s friends said they were shocked — not just that Sorensen had been killed, but that he reportedly was acting violent and aggressive. One friend said Sorensen struggled to communicate and understand social cues, and wondered if a “processing delay did play into the fact that he didn’t stop."
Another friend said the shooter “did not have to use a gun” and wondered "if the shooter would have shot so quickly had Jeremy been white and not black.”
The Tribune is not identifying the shooter because he has not been charged with a crime.
“The loss of any life is a tragedy,” Leavitt said in his statement. “I express my appreciation to all involved in investigating and reviewing this matter, and express my sincerest sympathy to the Sorenson family for their loss.”