AP: Utah cops tipped before man shot ex-girlfriend, children in Sandy
DRAPER, Utah (AP) Police in Utah investigated an anonymous tip about a man who wanted to kill his ex-girlfriend and himself just before he killed the woman and her son this month in a shooting that also injured two children, according to documents provided Wednesday in response to a public records request from The Associated Press.
The tipster called 911 about Jeremy Patterson after getting a message from Patterson saying he had just broken up with his girlfriend and wanted to kill her and himself, according to a report from police in the Salt Lake City suburb of Draper, where Patterson, the shooter, lived.
The female tipster told a police dispatcher she wanted to remain anonymous because she said knowing about the situation could put her in danger, the report said.
A Draper officer investigated the call June 6, the same day Patterson, 32, opened fire on the car his ex-girlfriend Memorez Rackley was riding in, killing her and her 6-year-old son. The shooting happened in the suburb of Sandy, which borders Draper.
The officer tried to call the tipster but no one answered the phone number she provided, the report said.
The tipster gave Patterson's name but did not provide Rackley's name, it said.
The officer then searched for Patterson's name in two police databases, but found several people by the same name and could not determine which one might be related to the call, the documents said. The tipster also did not provide an address for Patterson in the 911 call.
Police have said Patterson encountered Rackley later that day and argued with her as she walked her children home from school. A passing motorist with three children in her sports utility vehicle stopped and picked up Rackley and her children to help them.
But Patterson followed them in his pickup truck and rammed the SUV off the street, got out and started shooting, police have said. Rackley and her son were killed before Patterson killed himself. Rackley's 11-year-old son and the daughter of the woman driving the SUV were wounded.
The shooting came three days after Rackley told Sandy police that Patterson had been relentlessly stalking her and she was afraid for her safety, according to Sandy police documents obtained by the AP in a previous public records request.
She told officers she did not want to press charges against Patterson but that she would seek a court protective order for him to stay away from her and her children.
Court records in the Salt Lake City area show no indication that she did so before the shooting.