Suspect charged with aggravated assault tells police it was arm-wrestling gone wrong

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

ST. GEORGE — Charges were filed Monday against a Hurricane man who is suspected of beating and choking a man during a physical altercation that took place over the weekend and originated from an apparent fight over a woman, authorities say. The man also had other active warrants for his arrest at the time.

Aaron Pat Young, 43, has been charged with third-degree felony assault for an incident reported on Friday when officers were dispatched to a report of a man who was assaulted in the bedroom of his home in Hurricane shortly before midnight.

The caller told officers he was lying on his bed when the suspect walked into the room and started punching him, the officer recounted in the probable cause statement filed in support of the arrest.

As the assault continued, the caller stated the suspect allegedly wrapped his hands around the the man’s neck, cutting off his airway until he was unable to breathe, or “chocking him out,” the officer wrote.

A woman who was also in the home at the time entered the bedroom and was able to get the suspect out of the room and both left the house immediately after, which is when the injured man called police.

Aaron Pat Young, 43, of Hurricane, booking photo taken in Washington County, Utah, Feb. 19, 2021 | Photo courtesy of the Washington County Sheriff’s Office, St. George News

Authorities also noted the caller had red marks and scratches around his neck that were consistent with being choked, the report states, and also noticed the man was bleeding from his mouth.

Police also found the house to be in disarray, with broken furniture and other signs that some type of altercation had taken place.

Minutes later on a nearby street, officers saw the suspect walking with the woman he reportedly left the residence with.

When confronted, the suspect denied the assault and said the two were arm wrestling and the caller got mad at the suspect when Young won the arm wrestling match, which is when the suspect claimed the caller attacked him. Young was able to push the man off, which he said is when “his hands made contact” with the reporting party’s neck.

According to the report, at that point in the conversation with Young, the officer had not mentioned “anything about the victim’s neck or the choking,” the report said.

The officer also noted that the caller had visible injuries, while the suspect had no conspicuous injuries and even told the officer he was uninjured during the incident.

As the interview was winding down Young told police the man who was assaulted had been “sleeping” with his girlfriend.

Through the course of the investigation, officers spoke to a witness who gave a similar account of the altercation, saying that Young “beat the victim.”

The suspect was arrested and booked into Purgatory Correctional Facility for felony aggravated assault and several outstanding warrants.

Officers also found through a background check that Young had active warrants for his arrest listed on the statewide system, including one such warrant issued on a case reported in September 2019 when the suspect was arrested in the Rockville area for being in possession of a dangerous weapon and misdemeanor drug charges.

According to court records, when the suspect failed to appear for a resolution hearing on the weapons charge 11 months later, a warrant was issued for his arrest. On that same day, a warrant was issued on an unrelated drug case.

Another active warrant involved a domestic disturbance in progress was reported shortly before 7 p.m. July 29, 2020 in the parking lot of Lion’s Park at mile marker 128 on Highway 191 in Grand County. A witness told emergency dispatch, they had seen the suspect, later identified as Young, strike a woman at least one time.

Officers responded and noted the woman had blood coming from one of her ears. She was later checked out by an ambulance crew and a no-contact order was filed in the case. Young was charged with misdemeanor assault and a warrant was issued Sept. 17 when he failed to appear for a settlement conference in the case.

The suspect was formally charged with third-degree felony aggravated assault on Monday and remains in custody  following Friday’s arrest on $11,090 bail.

This report is based on statements from court records, police or other responders and may not contain the full scope of findings. Persons arrested or charged are presumed innocent until found guilty in a court of law or as otherwise decided by a trier-of-fact.

Copyright St. George News, LLC, 2021, all rights reserved.

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