Orem man charged with felony for allegedly calling in bomb threats to store, police say

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OREM, Utah, May 7, 2021 (Gephardt Daily) — An Orem man has been arrested after allegedly calling in two bomb threats to a Walmart so he could steal a scooter from the store, police say.

A probable cause statement from Utah County said Michael Gurule, 62, is facing charges of:

  • Threat of terrorism, a third-degree felony
  • Commercial obstruction, a class A misdemeanor
  • Retail theft, a class A misdemeanor

On March 21, a man called in two bomb threats to the Walmart at 1355 South Sandhill Road in Orem, the statement said.

The man was caught on video selecting a GOTRAX scooter from the back of the store and taking it to another location in the store to assemble it.

The man was seen on video using his cellphone while in the store. At this same time, a bomb threat was called in. The first call came in at 7:05 p.m.. A second call, also a bomb threat, came in from the same number at 7:16 p.m. Gurule then left the store with the scooter, which is worth $600, police say.

“Walmart management chose to evacuate the building and have the police come in and search the building for any possible bombs,” the statement said. “The store was closed for approximately two hours while the police searched. No device was found and the store

Investigators reviewed video surveillance from the store and received information from the cellphone provider. The arresting officer then contacted Gurule’s Adult Probation and Parole agent and attempted to set up a time for Gurule to be interviewed. Gurule did not show up for his next check in with the AP&P agent so the agent and the officer went to his home, but he wasn’t there.

“A warrant was drafted for Gurule’s cellphone provider,” the statement said. “The warrant was approved and I received all of Gurule’s call information for the date of the bomb threat. After reviewing the information I matched two calls from Gurule’s cellphone to the
Walmart in Orem. The dates and times matched the dates and times that the bomb threat was called in at.”

Gurule was arrested Tuesday and transported to Utah County Jail, where he is being held without bail.


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