‘I wondered if they were going to kill me’; 79-year-old woman assaulted, police searching for suspects

Aug 2, 2023, 9:44 PM

TAYLORSVILLE, Utah — A 79-year-old woman was left bloodied and bruised after she was assaulted by two suspects police are trying to find.

Maurine Peterson said she was inside her home, sorting her prescriptions when two strangers walked into her house and attacked her around 6:30 p.m. Friday.

“I’m not sure how it all happened, but I was in my front room and they were in the house,” she said. “One of them came flying toward me with his fists, doubled, and smacked me in the head.”

Taylorsville Police are seeking the public’s help finding the suspects shown in surveillance camera images. Any information should be reported to Taylorsville Dispatch at 801-840-4000 and refer to case number TY23-25127.

Peterson’s condo is in a Taylorsville senior living community. Her neighbor, Wayne Pierce caught the suspects on his doorbell camera. They went to his door first.

“The Ring doorbell made me aware that there was someone here at the front door,” Pierce said. “They didn’t knock but I happened to open my phone, looked to see what it was. There was a couple young men at the door and I mentioned to my wife at that time, don’t go answer the door, I don’t like the way they look.”

Two apparent young adults are caught on camera at a neighbors house before they broke and entered into Peterson’s home. (KSL TV)

Another neighbor, Mike Fritz, said he felt suspicious about the pair, too.

“I was watching TV and out our side window at the back of the house, I saw two kids run back and forth,” he said.

Peterson said she doesn’t think her attackers stole anything. “I heard one of them say something like ‘money,’ and I can remember saying, ‘If I had some, I’d give it to you.'”

She said she thinks she went unconscious. Later she awoke and walked outside for help.

“My neighbor happened to come out and I hollered at her,” Peterson said.

Peterson is covered in bruises, bumps and cuts all over her body. “I’m feeling better, it’s going to take a while,” she said.

Maurine Peterson shows one of the wounds she has on her arm from the attackers. (KSL TV)

She said the experience terrified her. She wants to know why these suspects attacked her.

“I kind of wondered if they were going to kill me,” Peterson said.

Her neighbors said they’re also on edge.

“We’ve just not had issues like this,” Pierce said. “We’ve been here, my wife and I, 17 years. This really shook things up.”

While Peterson heals, she’s focusing on her family. Her daughters, grandchildren and great-grandchildren are by her side. She said one question haunts her.

“What if I had had my grandkids in the house? I just wonder why do some people act that way,” Peterson said.

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‘I wondered if they were going to kill me’; 79-year-old woman assaulted, police searching for suspects