Prosecutors ask for more time in case of father accused of killing infant son

Posted at 11:24 AM, May 20, 2013
and last updated 2013-05-20 14:51:52-04

PROVO, Utah - Prosecutors are asking for more time in the case of an American Fork father, accused of shooting and killing his infant son.

Joshua Petersen, 21, is facing aggravated murder charges in connection with the shooting death of his five-month-old son Ryker in April.

A status conference scheduled for Monday was delayed. Prosecutors are asking for more time to go over some of Petersen's medical records. They want to know more about his mental state at the time of the shooting. Petersen has a history of depression.

Investigators say Petersen was upset that his girlfriend broke up with him, so he plotted to kill his five-month-old son. He is accused of shooting Ryker in the head with a rifle in April at his American Fork home. Police say Petersen tried to kill himself before family members stopped him.

Prosecutors say no matter how long it takes, they want justice for the victim's family.

"Each hearing brings more stress to their lives. They'd like some closure, certainly. But at the same time we're dealing with the life of someone, we want to make sure it's done right," said Craig Johnson, Deputy Utah County attorney.

Prosecutors have not decided if they'll seek the death penalty. Petersen will be back in court in Provo on June 17.