ST. GEORGE — A Utah man is in jail facing aggravated assault and other charges following an arrest in Mohave County, Arizona, where the suspect allegedly assaulted a juvenile attending a Boy Scout camp last month, according to authorities.
According to a statement released Wednesday by the Mohave County Sheriff’s Office, 30-year-old Kaleb Maclain Paxman, of Salina, was arrested and booked into the Mohave County Jail in Arizona facing three felony charges, including two counts of aggravated assault and one count of dangerous drug possession. He also faces one misdemeanor count of assault.
The arrest stems from an incident reported on May 14 when officers were dispatched to what was initially reported as a call for assistance shortly before midnight MST involving several individuals who consumed psilocybin mushrooms and were in need of medical attention, the statement said.
Using GPS coordinates, deputies made their way out to the campsite located in a remote area of public land just outside of St. George. While en route, officers received information from emergency dispatch indicating there was another individual, later identified as Paxman, who was at the campsite and had reportedly punched a windshield and was behaving violently.
Shortly thereafter, an emergency call came into 911 reporting that a juvenile boy attending a nearby Boy Scout camp had been assaulted, information that was relayed to officers still making their way to the area.
Deputies with the Mohave County Sheriff’s Office began scouring the area in search of the individuals and were soon joined by Washington Sheriff’s deputies and Bureau of Land Management officers.
During the search, officers located three individuals who were “wandering around the desert near the campsite,” authorities say. One of the men in the group was Paxman, who reportedly had several scrapes and a large laceration on his head.
During this time, officers arrived at the campsite and requested an ambulance after they found the juvenile who was injured during the incident. EMTs arrived and provided the child with emergency medical treatment while authorities spoke to the boy about what happened.
According to the report, the youth told officers that shortly before the incident he was in his tent when he heard someone calling out for help. The youth said he left his tent when he heard the noise, which is when he encountered Paxman.
At that point, the youth said the suspect bit and choked him and then attempted to “gouge his eyes out with his thumbs,” the officer wrote in the report. One of the adult chaperones reportedly intervened after he heard the commotion. The chaperone confronted the suspect who then fled from the area on foot.
The juvenile was transported to the hospital to be treated for his injuries and was released shortly after.
Paxman was located and arrested by Mohave County Sheriff’s deputies and then booked into jail in Kingman, Arizona, facing the charges as listed in the report.
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.
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