MURRAY, Utah, Oct. 15, 2021 (Gephardt Daily) — The girlfriend of a 22-year-old man killed in a shooting in Murray on Sept. 29 has been charged with obstruction of justice.
Officers from multiple agencies were called at about 1:50 a.m. to a residence near 125 E. 4800 South, where they found Carlos Jhovany Huerta-Garcia in extremely critical condition.
He was taken to Intermountain Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead a short while later.
Police believe Huerta-Garcia and the suspect knew each other, but they have yet to make an arrest.
A probable cause statement from the 3rd District Court of Salt Lake County said Vanessa Lucia Arnold, 40, is facing a charge of obstruction of justice, a second-degree felony.
Arnold’s probable cause statement said Huerta-Garcia was found in the front room of the residence with a gunshot wound. Arnold was allegedly at the residence during the homicide, the statement said.
“Vanessa told Murray police during her first two separate interviews that she was home with Garcia upstairs in their bedroom until he went downstairs and was shot by an unknown suspect,” the statement said. “Vanessa claimed that she never left the bedroom for about 24 hours prior to the shooting except one time briefly to clean something.”
Murray police obtained video surveillance from a nearby business that showed the back of the property where the homicide occurred, the statement said.
“The video shows Vanessa outside, going back and forth from the residence to a camper trailer multiple times with a male for over an hour prior to the shooting,” the statement said.
The male in the video has been identified as a family member of Arnold’s, the statement added. That individual was allegedly seen on video leaving the scene in a vehicle seconds after the gunshot.
Arnold was interviewed two more times since officials obtained the footage and denied each time that the male she was allegedly seen with “was ever present or even that she was outside engaged in any sort of activity possibly related to the homicide,” the statement said. “She has continued to deny this even when confronted with the obtained evidence.”
A second family member also told detectives that the first family member was there on the night of the shooting.
“Vanessa knowingly gave wrong information about who else was at the residence, first claiming the male who drove the vehicle was named Ismael and later called the person Israel in a separate interview, not keeping her story straight,” the statement said.
Arnold was on probation with other warrants at the time of her arrest.
“She has been willfully withholding information pertinent to this homicide and is likely still in contact with the suspect,” the statement said.
Investigators are asking the public, should they have any information regarding this incident, to call 801-840-4000 and reference case MR21-31097.