Utah teenage girl charged in crime spree set to go to trial in February

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PROVO, Utah — A two-week trial has been scheduled for February for a teenage girl charged with aggravated murder in a Utah crime spree that claimed the lives of a deputy and the teen's boyfriend.

Megan Grunwald, 18, made a brief appearance Monday in a Provo courtroom while her attorney and prosecutors settled on a date, The Salt Lake Tribune reported (http://bit.ly/ZmVobn ).

Prosecutors said Grunwald was driving on Jan. 30 when she and her boyfriend, Jose Garcia-Jauregui, went on a 50-mile crime spree in which Utah County sheriff's Sgt. Cory Wride was killed and deputy Greg Sherwood was wounded. Garcia-Jauregui died too.

Outside court, Grunwald's attorney, Dean Zabriskie, said he plans to argue that Grunwald's boyfriend forced his client into her role in the crime spree. He said Grunwald, who has been in jail since her arrest, is eager to get closure in her case.

"She's a little girl," Zabriskie told the Tribune. "She's suffering. She wants to get this resolved. She's locked up in . a cold, dark world."

Grunwald has pleaded not guilty to the charges against her, which include aggravated murder, felony discharge of a firearm and intentional criminal mischief.

Deputy Utah County Attorney Sam Pead said a plea deal is still a possibility, though he declined to offer details. He said the prosecution's case will feature dash-cam video from police vehicles that will let the jury see what happened during the crime spree.

Pead said the case will revolve around "what the jury believes the defendant's motivation was."


Information from: The Salt Lake Tribune, http://www.sltrib.com

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