Suspect wanted in connection to gang shooting in Layton arrested in St. George after alleged assault

Stock image, St. George News

ST. GEORGE — A suspect with a criminal history dating back to his juvenile years is in jail facing assault after he allegedly assaulted a pregnant woman during an altercation in St. George on Tuesday night.

File photo of Purgatory Correctional Facility, Washington County, Utah, date not specified | St. George News

According to charging documents, officers in St. George arrested 22-year-old Anthony Brandon Sanchez, who now lives in St. George, following the report of an incident involving a woman who had been struck in the face by Sanchez.

Officers responded to the call shortly after 11:30 p.m. Tuesday and learned the suspect had allegedly hit the woman and then ripped off her shirt, which is when she called police and the suspect fled on foot.

The incident began when two women were giving the suspect a ride to his home. Sanchez, who was reportedly intoxicated at the time, became agitated and kicked the the back of the driver’s seat and then slapped one of the women.

The driver stopped the car, and when she opened the passenger’s side door, the suspect kicked her in the stomach, according to the report. When she called police, Sanchez ran off.

Officers learned the woman was four months pregnant when the incident allegedly took place.

Officers ran a background check on Sanchez that revealed he had a no-bail warrant issued out of 2nd District Court in Farmington that was still active. Officers responded to the suspect’s home address where they asked Sanchez to explain what happened. At that point he asked for an attorney, and all questioning stopped.

Sanchez was taken into custody and transported to Purgatory Correctional Facility on charges of misdemeanor assault on a pregnant person, and he was also booked on the warrant.

The warrant was issued on a 2018 case that began when police officers responded to an apartment complex in Layton on report of shots fired on June 22. One week later on June 29, officers were called out to a report of another shooting in a different location that was believed to be a drive-by in retaliation for the June 22 incident, according to charging documents filed with the court.

Two days later, officers were dispatched to a separate residence that was shot multiple times, and officers again believed the incident was connected to the original shots fired call.

Investigators received information that Sanchez was reportedly with one of the victims in the first shooting – a friend and “admitted gang member” – and that the incidents were gang-related shootings.

Ridgewood Estates mobile home park where shots were fired in June, 2018 in Layton, Utah, July 8, 2021 | Photo courtesy of Google Maps, St. George News

Sanchez was also wearing an ankle monitor at the time that was equipped with a GPS tracking system that showed him near the address of the alleged retaliation shooting on June 29

With the data captured by the ankle monitor, combined with statements gleaned through the course of the investigation, officers had reason to believe that Sanchez was present and an active participant during the two subsequent shootings reported on June 29 and July 1.

The detective also noted it was “reasonable to believe that Anthony’s intent was to cause the death to the individuals inside the residence,” referring to the July 1 report.

Sanchez was originally facing an attempted murder charge but ultimately pleaded guilty to two felony discharge of a firearm charges, since he was still on juvenile probation when the shootings took place. He was sentenced to serve nearly 300 days in jail and placed on three years’ probation.

Since October 2019, Sanchez has been unaccounted for and has failed to comply with the terms of his probation, at which point the no-bail warrant was issued out of 2nd District Court.

The suspect remains in custody and is scheduled to make an appearance in 2nd District Court in Farmington on July 15.

Ed. Note: A new Utah law generally prohibits the release of arrest booking photos until after a conviction is obtained. 

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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