Authorities identify Utah County deputy who shot armed man threatening to kill teen girl

Posted at 7:00 PM, Jun 18, 2016
and last updated 2016-06-18 21:00:11-04

EAGLE MOUNTAIN, Utah — The Utah County Sheriff’s Office has identified a deputy who fatally shot a suspect who was armed with a large knife and who threatened to count down from 60 before killing a 17-year-old girl.

A press release from the sheriff’s office states Deputy Brett Lawrenson was among the officers who responded to an Eagle Mountain home June 12 on report of a man threatening suicide.

When officers arrived, 23-year-old Daniel Bennett Edwards was holding his wife’s 17-year-old niece hostage while wielding a large knife. The man refused to drop the knife and would not let the girl go.

According to the release, Edwards then threatened the girl, saying he was going to count down from 60 and then kill her. Deputy Lawrenson then fired a single shot, striking Edwards in the head.

Edwards was pronounced dead at the scene. The teen victim suffered only minor injury.

Lawrenson has been with the sheriff’s office since 2008, when he began working as a part-time reserve deputy. Later that year he was hired as a full-time deputy and assigned to the patrol division. Lawrenson is currently a member of the SWAT team and is also a K9 handler. He worked with the Utah Department of Corrections for six years prior to his time with the sheriff’s office, according to the press release.