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Desert shooting death now a capital murder case as alleged plot is unveiled

By Pat Reavy, Deseret News | Posted - Nov. 27, 2020 at 11:12 a.m.


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TOOELE — Police say an Amazon account belonging to a Sandy man who was shot to death and his body left in a remote area of Tooele County was used in June.

Now investigators want to know how that person obtained access to 21-year-old Chance Eggett's account one month after he was killed.

In May, police say three people lured Eggett to a remote area in Tooele County near Faust Road under the guise of going target shooting — Wyatt William Smelser, 20, of Cottonwood Heights; Hakop "Jack" Keshishian, 20, of Sandy; and Izaiah Kirkpatrick, 20, of Draper.

Once there, Eggett was shot and killed and his body was dragged into sagebrush off the side of the road, according to charging documents. The three men were each charged with murder, a first-degree felony.

On Oct. 27, prosecutors filed amended charges against Kirkpatrick, the accused gunman, and Keshishian, the one who allegedly arranged to have Eggett killed, and raised the charges to a capital offense, meaning both men could potentially face the death penalty if convicted.

Additionally, the two men were charged with obstructing justice and abuse or desecration of a dead body.

Their next court hearing was scheduled for Dec. 1.

Keshishian said he wanted to kill Eggett "because he was running his mouth," according to charging documents.

A newly unsealed search warrant affidavit reveals more details about a possible motive.

Early on the morning of May 21, Keshishian asked to borrow another man's cellphone to contact Eggett. The man said that "he was under the impression" that Keshishian didn't like Eggett, but Keshishian told him it was "all good now," the warrant states. Keshishian allegedly claimed he had one of Eggett's rifles and needed to call him so he could pick up Eggett and take him shooting and return his gun.

Police say the group picked up Eggett about 3 a.m.

But the same man also told police that earlier in the evening, Keshishian had said, "It's happening tonight." When the officer asked the witness what that meant, he replied, "Jack was mean to Chance. (He) reported Jack had previously beaten him, peed on him, and tied him up to a chair before. (He) said Jack had talked about killing Chance several times in the past," according to the warrant.

The witness also said that "Jack had gotten crazy during the past six months and started carrying guns." Keshishian had also been traveling to California to obtain drugs to sell in Utah, the affidavit states.

"Recently while driving in a car with Jack, Jack received a call from someone asking to purchase methamphetamine. Jack asked the unknown person on the phone who told him he had methamphetamine, and the unknown person on the phone said Chance was telling people Jack had a large amount of methamphetamine stashed away to sell," according to the warrant.

The witness said that's when Keshishian stated, "It's happening tonight."

After Eggett's body was found, investigators noted that several of his personal belongings had not been recovered and remained missing at the time the warrant was issued in early November. Eggett's mother told police her son had a fanny pack containing his cellphone, wallet and credit cards with him that night.

On June 22 — a month after Eggett was killed — someone used his Amazon account to purchase a digital blood pressure monitor and mosquito net, according to the affidavit.

Police believe that "someone associated with Chance Eggett's death may be in possession of Chance Eggett's cellphone and may possibly be using that phone to access Chance Eggett's Amazon.com account," the warrant states.

Sandy police, who served the warrant, said they collected the information needed and turned it over to the Tooele County Sheriff's Office to continue the investigation.

As of Wednesday, it was unknown whether a suspect had been identified. The case is still under investigation, but the sheriff's office said it believes everyone involved in the murder plot has been accounted for.

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Pat Reavy

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