CRIME

Police searching for man targeted by suspect in Sgt. Bill Hooser’s death

May 23, 2024, 7:56 PM | Updated: 10:23 pm

SANTAQUIN, Utah County — Investigators are putting out a call for help to find the witness they believe was one of the first people to encounter the man accused of killing Sgt. Bill Hooser, after the suspect, Michael Aaron Jayne, allegedly ran from the scene.

The Utah County Sheriff’s Office Thursday released surveillance photos of the witness, who was seen at the Maverik gas station on 725 E. Main Street in Santaquin on May 5.

Sgt, Spencer Cannon said after Jayne allegedly hit and killed Sgt. Hooser on Intersate-15, they think he jumped the fence by the interstate and went through the Maverik parking lot.

“There was a gentleman there who was gassing up his car, and [the suspect] made an effort to take that car from the guy,” Cannon explained.

He said the verbal exchange appeared to be brief and didn’t last long, but whatever the witness said to the suspect caused the suspect to move on.

Jayne is accused of instead stealing a semi from behind the Maverik.

Cannon said they want to know what this man’s perspective was, and what he saw from his vantage point.

They’d also like to know what the two said to each other.

“Maybe Jayne said something to him that that would be helpful to our investigation, that may be incriminating to himself,” Cannon said. “You know, we don’t know. It’d just be nice to know what it was, if anything.”

The Sheriff’s Office describes the driver as a man with a ponytail, wearing a visor, and using a crutch to walk. He was seen driving a silver sedan.

If you know the driver’s identity, the sheriff’s office asks you to contact Sgt. Justin Gordon of the Utah County Sheriff’s Office at 801-851-4010 or by email at justing@utahcounty.gov.

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Police searching for man targeted by suspect in Sgt. Bill Hooser’s death