Woman recalls face-to-face encounter with bomb threat suspect at Eagle Mountain school

Posted at 9:51 PM, Sep 19, 2016
and last updated 2016-09-19 23:51:26-04

EAGLE MOUNTAIN, Utah - Teri Ruth pulled up to Eagle Mountain Elementary school just after 2 p.m.

Monday was an early day and she was eager to see her 8-year-old granddaughter. Before she made it inside, a car in front of her pulled up on the curb right in front of the school. She said the man behind the wheel stepped out wearing a mask.

"He turned around and told me that there was a bomb in the back of his car, for me to watch, that he was going to activate it," Ruth said.

Ruth was face-to-face with a man police would later identify as Christopher Craig. After hearing the threat, she watched as he went back to his car, popping the trunk and doing something inside.

"He says, ‘the explosives are on. Get the children out. I am not here to hurt the children,’" Ruth recalled.

She went inside the school. Craig went inside as well.

The threat was repeated to school staff and an evacuation started. Ruth said Craig started to leave the school office.

"When he turned around I was nose-to-nose to him," Ruth said.

She described his eyes as blank and his voice as calm.

As teachers and staff started to move kids out of the building, Ruth sought out her granddaughter and a close family friend. She found them both and joined the evacuating students and staff.

Hours later, with the suspect Christopher Craig in custody and her loved ones safe, Ruth remembered something in her pocket. On the way to school, she had found two pennies on the ground.  Two lucky pennies.

"A penny for each girl.  I was going to get my kids out of there," Ruth said.