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Man forces entry; kidnaps, assaults girlfriend

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SALT LAKE CITY — The grandmother of a man arrested for aggravated assault and kidnapping has raised some dispute over what happened between the parties involved in the Tuesday night incident.

According to police, just after 8 p.m. Tuesday, the 42-year-old live-in girlfriend of Alex Rodney Thurman, 40, was visiting friends at 813 W. 400 North. Thurman allegedly jumped a fence and forced entry into the home to retrieve her.

Armed with an ice pick, Thurman forced the woman to go with him, according to police. The homeowner and homeowner's young son tried to intervene but were assaulted by Thurman, who punched them, according to police.

According to jail documents, after the fight, Thurman forced his girlfriend to leave the residence and go back to their home, which they share with Thurman's grandmother.

The woman was eventually able to escape by telling Thurman she had to go to the bathroom and then climbing out the bathroom window, said Salt Lake police officer Josh Ashdown.

Anytime anybody's physically harming you, it's not OK. It's time to leave.

–- Det. Josh Ashdown

The woman, police say, had multiple injuries from Thurman's abuse. No hospitalization was necessary.

Thurman was taken into custody about 11:30 a.m. on Wednesday. He was booked into jail for investigation of aggravated kidnapping, two counts of aggravated assault and aggravated burglary.

But, Thurman's grandmother says that's not what happened.

She told KSL that the girlfriend slipped out during the night and came back the next morning. The grandmother claims she was the one who took Thurman to the neighbors to call the cops.

She says both Thurman and the girlfriend regret what happened.

Police say these cases are disturbing, and have specialized advocates who professionally handle them. They urge people who are found in a situation alleged against Thurman to seek help.

"Anytime anybody's physically harming you, it's not OK. It's time to leave." said Det. Josh Ashdown with the Salt Lake City Police Department. "It's something that usually doesn't change, and something that ends up becoming a cycle."

He has an extensive criminal history dating back to 1990, according to Utah State Court records, including cases of domestic violence and abuse and negligence and exploitation of a vulnerable adult. He was dismissed of both charges during court proceedings.


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Andrew Adams and Pat Reavy


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