Salt Lake City woman arrested for murder of homeless man

Posted at 8:59 AM, Apr 14, 2023

SALT LAKE CITY — A Salt Lake City woman was arrested Thursday and faces a murder charge after a homeless man was found dead earlier this week.

Alta Mardell, 23, was arrested after an investigation into a suspicious death at an abandoned business within the city.

The building, located at 401 West 900 South was where the adult man, identified as 41-year-old Jonathan Devereaux, had been camping and living, arrest documents state.

Police said Devereaux was found dead near the entrance of the building with "critical wounds to his body," and his death was ruled as a homicide, court documents report.

After interviewing witnesses, police learned Mardell had entered the building through the front door and, "a short time later [she] exited the building and told a witness she had been assaulted by the man inside," documents report.

Witnesses told police she had a knife and made statements that she was going to "handle business" before entering the abandoned building for the second time.

When she came out of the building again, she told witnesses she needed to leave, documents report, and that she had stabbed the man with her knife.

Police later located Mardell at a residence in Salt Lake City, where she was taken into custody.

At the residence, police found a knife and pants with blood stains, court documents report.

Salt Lake Police officials report the incident marks the fifth homicide in Salt Lake City for 2023.