New details released after South Salt Lake Amber Alert, rescue of woman mistaken for juvenile

The suspect in a June 25, 2021 South Salt Lake abduction case has been identified as Carl Justice Gravitt. Photo: South Salt Lake Police Department

SOUTH SALT LAKE, Utah, June 26, 2021 (Gephardt Daily) — Suspect Carl Justice Gravitt’s affidavit reveals new details in the case of an alleged kidnapping Friday night that resulted in an Amber Alert Saturday morning.

Witnesses at the scene of Miniature Market Convenience Store, 310 E. 3300 South in South Salt Lake reported what they believed was the kidnapping of a juvenile at 10:28 p.m. Friday night, and a surveillance video seemed to support the conclusion. It shows a slim, relatively short female flee from a red Pathfinder after Gravitt exits to go in the store.

The victim runs to a customer at a gas pump, reportedly crying and asking for help escaping. The suspect, later identified as 22-year-old Gravitt, chases the victim, slings her over his shoulder, and carries her back to the Pathfinder, which is later determined to be a stolen vehicle.

Court documents reveal the victim is 36. Danielle Croyle, South Salt Lake Police Department, said at an afternoon news conference that the woman was mistaken for a juvenile due to her height, 5 feet 1 inch, her weight, 89 pounds, and the fact that she lost a size 3 shoe at the scene.

Amber alerts are issued for children 17 and younger. The woman’s size and witness testimony suggested she could be a juvenile, Croyle said.

This is a screen grab from surveillance video released by the South Salt Lake Police Department on Saturday, June 26, 2021, of an alleged abduction.

Gavitt’s probable cause statement says he was identified, at least in part, by police use of a tattoo database. Police went to his address in West Valley City, and found him and the victim in the Pathfinder, parked outside the residence, the statement says.

The statement says Gravitt was read his Miranda rights, and agreed to answer some questions. He said he and the woman had been dating for about eight months.

“He admitted to having driven (her) to the gas station where she ran away,” the affidavit says. “He admitted she was afraid he was going to assault her because he had in the past. When she ran he chased her, picked her up and slung her over his shoulder while she was asking someone for help. He said he put her in the vehicle and drove away.

“Gravitt said he did not know the vehicle was stolen, but bought at a park on Wednesday from an unknown person. Inside his pocket when he was arrested was a syringe commonly used for illegal drugs. He admitted it was his and to having used meth yesterday.”

Elsewhere in the statement, police noted they had called the Salt Lake City owner of the vehicle, who identified the Pathfinder as his, and said he did not know who had it.

At the South Salt Lake Police Department, officers also interviewed the woman who tried to flee Gravitt.

“She stated she has been being abused for sometime by Gravitt,” the police statement says. “She said they had an argument last night and he hit and kicked her in the car. She slumped to the floor board to get away. When Gravitt went into the gas station, she saw he was gone and ran away.

“She ran toward a male and asked him to help her. Gravitt picked her up and drug her to the vehicle. She said she did not want to got with Gravitt and wanted to get away.”

Gravitt is behind held without bail, court documents reveal.

See the surveillance video below.

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