‘It was a tragic incident’; report of shots fired leads to discovery of alleged murder, attempted suicide

Stock image | Photo by Chalabala/iStock/Getty Images Plus, St. George News

CEDAR CITY — Police responded to a report of shots fired in the 100 West block of Sunset Drive in Cedar City Sunday night, which was the beginning of a potential murder investigation.

Cedar City Police Sgt. Clint Pollock told Cedar City News the initial information from the call, which came in around 10:38 p.m., indicated that an adult man had been shot, and the suspect’s whereabouts were unknown.

“When officers arrived, they found a 47-year-old adult male, Jeremey Hunter, deceased from multiple gunshot wounds,” he said. “The suspect was Chaz Bennett, and he had fled on foot in the area.”

Pollock said officers located Bennett nearby and observed that he was carrying two rifles.

“As they were commanding him to put the guns down, he took off running,” Pollock said. “He ran for a short distance, then he stopped and turned a gun on himself and shot himself.”

After securing the rifles, officers began administering aid to Bennett, who was transported by Gold Cross Ambulance to a hospital then flown to a different facility. Bennett sustained life-threatening injuries and is currently on life support.

A Facebook post made by Chaz Bennett on April 27, 2020 | Screenshot by Jeff Richards, St George News / Cedar City News

Officer found rounds from Bennett’s rifles in two nearby homes.

“There were no other injuries reported,” Pollock said. “There was a home that was struck, and then a metal box on a home was also struck by one of the rounds.”

Pollock said investigators are aware of Facebook posts and comments made by Bennett that could be considered threatening.

“Our investigators are going through all that stuff; I know that all that is a part of the investigation,” Pollock said.

Bennett appears to have multiple Facebook accounts, which he used to post to the Iron County Rant and Rave Facebook group. Bennett has recently said things in the group such as, “Have a seat, the show is about to begin” and “Today is a day of reckoning.”

A post from April indicates someone had reached out to Bennett seemingly out of concern over content he was posting to Facebook.

Pollock said the incident is still under investigation.

“We extend our sympathies to all the families involved, it’s a tragic incident,” he said. “I hate to see those who have to go through this as well as our first responders that have to see that kind of stuff also.”

Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2020, all rights reserved.

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