Son arrested after woman found shot, killed in Pleasant Grove

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Posted at 6:36 AM, May 20, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-21 00:19:57-04

PLEASANT GROVE, Utah — A man was arrested in Pleasant Grove overnight after his mother was found shot to death.

Police received reports of gunfire around midnight in the area of 200 West and 200 North, and upon arrival, found the body of a 40-year-old woman lying next to an SUV in the middle of the road.

The woman, Nicki* Dinehart Peterson, had been shot and killed.

Just after the discovery, police responded to a call of a suspicious person in a nearby cemetery. Officers contacted the 21-year-old man, Gage Anthony Dinehart, who identified himself as the son of Peterson.

"I shot my mom," Dinehart told police, according to the arrest documents.

Along with his admission, Dinehart told officers where they could locate the gun he used, which was found in the grass near a hoodie.

Police said Dinehart claimed to have been arguing with his mother earlier in the day. Peterson's husband said Dinehart was in the couple's home earlier in the evening and appeared to be "agitated" and "demanding money from his mother."

"This is just a tragic, just tragic set of events,” said Capt. Britt Smith with the Pleasant Grove Police Department.

Social media accounts show that Peterson had recently gotten married a few weeks ago, and was a longtime tattoo artist who worked with people in recovery and those who wanted to remove their tattoos.

“I’m really shocked actually! I’m just mind blown because Gage is a good person, he really is and he’s just had a troubled life like a lot of other people,” said Shantel Jones, a friend of Dinehart's.

Police don't have a motive as to why Dinehart shot his mother, but they say they have video of the shooting from nearby security cameras.

A witness said he heard a gunshot, then saw someone in a black hoodie standing over a person laying on the ground before hearing another gunshot and seeing a "muzzle flash."

After being taken into custody, Dinehart was booked into the Utah County Jail. He faces homicide charges.

*The victim's name was initially reported as Vicki Dinehart Peterson but has since been corrected.