- Associated Press - Monday, March 3, 2014

PROVO, Utah (AP) - A Utah judge decided Monday not to lower bail for a teenage girl charged with aggravated murder in a crime spree that claimed the life of a deputy and her boyfriend.

The ruling came after defense attorney Dean Zabriskie asked that bail of $1 million be lowered to $100,000 for 17-year-old Meagan Grunwald, saying she is a high school student with no criminal record who needs to be home with her family, the Daily Herald of Provo reported (https://bit.ly/1hChJ9R ).

“She is as much a victim in this case as anyone else,” Zabriskie said. “What happened in the cab of that truck is speculation until she testifies.”

Prosecutors say Grunwald was an active participant in the Jan. 30 crime spree, driving the car as her boyfriend fired at police and helping him pull off a carjacking.

She was charged as an adult after a review of dashboard camera videos from patrol cars and other evidence from the pursuit that started in Utah County and ended in Juab County, authorities said.

Grunwald’s boyfriend, Jose Angel Garcia-Juaregui, 27, killed Utah County sheriff’s Sgt. Cory Wride and wounded Deputy Greg Sherwood, who was recently released from a hospital, authorities said.

Garcia-Juaregui died from wounds suffered in the shootout that ended the chase.

Utah County deputy attorney Sam Pead told Judge Darold McDade that Grunwald’s bail shouldn’t be lowered even one cent. Grunwald and Garcia-Juaregui were making plans to live together in Mexico and called his uncle after shooting Wride and said they “had done something very bad and needed help getting to California,” the prosecutor said.

The two had been living together for several months at her mother’s house.

The motive for the crime spree remained unclear but might have been related to an arrest warrant issued a day earlier for Garcia-Juaregui that alleged violations of his parole conditions. He had served 4 1/2 years for attempted homicide and was paroled from a Utah prison in December 2012.

A two-day evidence hearing was set starting April 16.


Information from: The Daily Herald, https://www.heraldextra.com

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