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Utah Firefighters Stop Murder by Chance After Responding to Phantom Fire Call

Image: Utah Firefighters Stop Murder by Chance After Responding to Phantom Fire Call
(Juan Echeveste Alba/Salt Lake County Jail)

By    |   Thursday, 07 Jul 2016 02:30 PM

Utah firefighters reportedly stopped a murder on Friday when they happened upon the scene during a call.

Four Unified Fire Authority firefighters didn't find a fire when they were dispatched in response to reports of smoke in Parleys Canyon last week, the Gephardt Daily reported. So they picked a "random exit" off Interstate 80 to turn around and happened across a car blocking the road. A man and woman were nearby, and the man was reportedly pulling on the end of a rope that was strung over a metal pipe and around the woman’s neck, as if to hang her, the newspaper said.

"The firefighters rushed the vehicle and restrained the man until Utah Highway Patrol troopers arrived and made an arrest," the Gephardt Daily reported.

The suspect, 22-year-old Juan Echeveste Alba, of Salt Lake City, was arrested on suspicion of attempted murder and aggravated kidnapping, the newspaper noted.

Echeveste allegedly tried to force the woman into the passenger seat of the car when he saw the firefighters, Fox 13 reported.

"They took action where they saw it needed to be," Sgt. Randy Riches of the State Bureau of Investigations told KSL.com. "They didn't hesitate. They rushed right in. They're the real heroes in this thing. Without them, who knows what would have happened to her?"

The woman, who suffered minor cuts and bruises, told investigators that the man punched her in the stomach, dragged her out of the vehicle, and threatened to kill her.

"I guess it's better to be lucky than good sometimes," Unified Fire Authority spokesman Eric Holmes told KSL.com. "Had it not been for the smoke call and had they gone one more exit, they never would have found her. Pretty amazing story."

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Utah firefighters reportedly stopped a murder on Friday when they happened upon the scene during a call.
utah, firefighters, stop, murder
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2016-30-07
Thursday, 07 Jul 2016 02:30 PM
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