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Man assaults girlfriend then has heart attack, police say

By Geoff Liesik | Posted - Aug 11th, 2014 @ 1:31pm

VERNAL — A Vernal man suspected of assaulting his girlfriend during a weekend camping trip suffered a heart attack shortly after the alleged assault.

Deputies were called Saturday about 7:15 p.m. to the Pot Holes area of Diamond Mountain on a report of a domestic dispute, according to Uintah County Sheriff's Cpl. Dustin Cheshire.

While deputies were still en route, a Division of Wildlife Resources conservation officer found a woman walking along Pot Holes Road. The woman told officers she and her boyfriend were camping at the Limber Flag Yurt in the Ashley National Forest when they began to argue. The argument became physical and the woman said her boyfriend dislocated her jaw, Cheshire said.

The woman also told deputies the man was armed with handgun.

"The victim did hear the suspect fire two shots, but said she didn’t see him do it and couldn’t describe where he had done it," Cheshire said.

Deputies were still making their way up the rugged road to the yurt when the woman's boyfriend called dispatchers to report that he was having a heart attack.

When deputies reached the yurt, a sheriff's K-9 was used to help them to move closer to the yurt. They were able to see the man laying on the bed through an open door.

"The suspect said he was in pain and deputies safely made contact with him," Cheshire said. "A handgun was recovered from the yurt, but it was safely secured in a case."

Uintah County search and rescue crews were called out to help move the man to a mountain clearing where a medical helicopter could land. The man was flown to a Salt Lake area hospital for treatment.

The woman was treated by ambulance crews at the scene and released.

The case has been referred to the Uintah County Attorney's Office for review.

Geoff Liesik

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Updated: Monday August 13, 2018 10:35 pm