Juab Co. Atty: Deadly force against accused cop-killer justified

Posted at 12:44 PM, Feb 14, 2014
and last updated 2014-02-14 19:44:14-05

JUAB COUNTY, Utah -- Juab County Attorney Jared Eldridge said officers were justified in using deadly force against the man accused of shooting and killing a Utah County sergeant.

Eldridge also provided new details about the events that occurred in Juab County following a series of shootings in Utah County.

Officers pursued Jose Angel Garcia-Jauregui, 27, and a 17-year-old female through Utah County and Juab County after he allegedly shot Sgt. Cory Wride and Deputy Greg Sherwood, both  on January 30. Click here for footage from the chase captured by dashboard cameras.

Wride was shot in Eagle Mountain and died of his injuries.

Sherwood was shot in Santaquin and was taken to Utah Valley Regional Medical Center, where he continues to recover from a gunshot wound to the head.

Following the shootings in Eagle Mountain and Santaquin, Garcia-Jauregui continued south on Interstate 15. Utah Highway Patrol troopers and deputies from the Utah County Sheriff's Office spotted the suspect's vehicle, a white

Toyota pickup, and gave chase near mile marker 231.

One of the officers said shots were being fired in his direction, so the officers involved in the pursuit backed off for safety reasons.

A deputy with the Juab County Sheriff's Office placed a spike strip near mile marker 226. Eldridge said it is believed that the spike strip did cause damage to the suspect vehicle.

Officers placed another spike strip, which caused accidental damage to at least one tire on a UHP vehicle, at mile marker 225.

The suspects got off I-15 at exit 222 in Nephi, abandoned the Toyota at the end of the ramp and allegedly ignored officers' commands to stop.

They continued south on Main St. and flagged down a Toyota Highlander driven by Chetney Williams. Garcia-Jauregui allegedly held a gun to Williams' head and carjacked the SUV.

Donna Monson, Williams' mother, told FOX 13 News that Williams had barely released her 3 1/2-year-old daughter's seat belt and picked her up before Garcia-Jauregui and his female companion got back on southbound I-15, hitting another spike strip.

Eldridge said the SUV then crossed the median, continued south in the northbound lanes and collided with another vehicle.

Garcia-Jauregui exited the Highlander and ran toward the other vehicle involved in the collision.

Meanwhile, officers arrived at the scene and began yelling for the second driver to get out of the way.

Garcia-Jauregui then opened fire in the officers' direction, Eldridge said, but the officers continued to approach him.

Eldridge said Garcia-Juaregui was clutching a handgun that officers had to pry from his hands.  He was also found in possession of an empty clip.

At some point during the ordeal, Garcia-Juaregui was shot and critically wounded. He died of his injuries the next day.

The 17-year-old girl was taken into custody and Eldridge stated Friday he would not answer any questions about her.