KEARNS — A man wanted in connection with the weekend shooting death of a Kearns resident was tracked down and arrested late Monday.
Douglas D. Evans, 31, was arrested for investigation of aggravated murder in the death of Theodore B. Kelbach, 49, of Kearns. He was also booked into the Salt Lake County Jail for investigation of aggravated burglary, obstruction of justice and for being a restricted person in possession of a firearm.
Kelbach, was "shot at point blank range" inside his house, 5446 S. Nez Perce Drive (5080 West), Saturday evening, Salt Lake County Sheriff Jim Winder said.
The motive for the shooting appears to be "a relationship issue" concerning Evans' girlfriend.
"We believe there was a jealously situation. Mr. Evans believed erroneously that Mr. Kelbach has a relationship with this young lady and we believe he reacted to that," Winder said.
Investigators believe Evans went to the back door of Kelbach's house on Saturday, where an argument occurred and Kelbach was shot. Witnesses saw Evans leave the home, according to police. Another adult was in the home at the time of the shooting but was not injured.
Evans was booked into the Salt Lake County Jail for investigation of aggravated murder, aggravated burglary, obstruction of justice and a weapons violation.
Winder said he was pleased with how well the investigation has progressed.
The first 48 hours were "critical" for detectives, Winder said, adding that "significant physical and eyewitness evidence" pointed investigators to Evans. Unified police worked through the weekend, with some officers not sleeping for more than 48 hours while trying to locate the suspect, the sheriff said.
Statements from witnesses who were in the house at the time of the shooting and neighbors, as well as "electronic means," were used to track Evans. Police arrested him without incident in the parking lot of the Hampton Inn, 3923 Center Park Drive in West Jordan.
"We didn't give him an opportunity to resist," Winder said.
As of Monday night, however, Evans was not cooperating with investigators and was giving false information to detectives, according to a Salt Lake County Jail report.
"The individual is just refusing to acknowledge the circumstances, but I think over time he'll get the picture," Winder said.
Evans has a lengthy criminal history that includes violence and aggression.
"The guy's a dangerous guy," said Winder, who was involved with one of Evans' prior arrests.
In 2003, Evans was convicted of misdemeanor lewdness in West Valley Justice Court. In a separate case that same year, he was convicted of two counts of violating a protective order in exchange for two other counts being dismissed, according to Utah state court records.Comment on this story
In late 2003, Evans was charged with several felonies including attempted aggravated murder, disarming a police officer, burglary and two counts of aggravated assault. A West Valley woman called police on Dec. 6 to report that Evans had violated a protection order she had against him. During a scuffle with responding officers, he grabbed an officer's gun and then ran off. During a foot chase with police, an officer shot him in the arm and a second officer struck him from behind in a pickup truck.
Evans eventually pleaded guilty to disarming a police officer and the other charges were dismissed. He was sentenced to five years to life in prison. A couple of other pending domestic violence-related cases were dismissed at that time, according to court records.
Evans was released from prison in February of 2013.
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