Millcreek man booked after beating death of housemate to make first court appearance this week

Tyler James Vernon. Photo: Salt Lake County

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah, Feb. 27, 2019 (Gephardt Daily) — A Millcreek man will be formally charged in connection with the Feb. 18 death of his housemate, and his first court appearance is scheduled for later this week.

A warrant was served to Tyler James Vernon, 37, on Wednesday, which indicates formal charges will be filed in the next few days, according to an official with the court system. Vernon is currently booked on suspicion of aggravated murder, a first degree felony.

A probable cause statement says that at 2:07 p.m. on Feb. 18, Unified Police officials were notified by dispatch that a man had called saying he was at his house and had just killed someone.

Officers arrived at the scene, 1280 E. 3770 South, seven minutes later, “and located the A/P (accused person) standing on the front porch with a metal object in his hands. Officers gave several commands for the A/P to drop the object which he did and was safely taken into custody.”

“Officers on scene entered the home fearing someone inside the residence was harmed. As officers entered the residence they observed a male lying face up in the living room next to the couch who had suffered severe head injuries and appeared to be deceased.”

Steven Richard Nyce. Photo: obituary

The victim was later identified by police as Steven Richard Nyce, 61, who shared the residence with Vernon.

The scene showed signs of a struggle, including items knocked over, the statement noted.

“Once the residence was searched and secured, Unified Fire Authority arrived on scene and one paramedic entered the residence and stated the male was beyond help and was deceased at 1415 hours.”

The suspect, later identified as Vernon, was taken to the UPD Holladay Precinct for interview, but declined to answer questions, the statement said.

According to a jail document written by a Unified Police officer, Vernon “appears to have beaten the victim to death, possibly with the large metal object he was holding when contacted by police. While attempting to interview (Vernon), he referred to the officers as demons and commanded them to release him in the name of God.”

The same day, Vernon was booked into the Salt Lake County jail system. He is being held in lieu of posting a $1 million bail.

His first court appearance has been scheduled for Friday.

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