Utah County Jail
Ian Walter Berg

SPANISH FORK — A Herriman man was charged Thursday with attacking a Utah County Jail clerk in an attempt to escape.

Ian Walter Berg, 30, is charged in 4th District Court with aggravated kidnapping and aggravated escape, first-degree felonies; plus aggravated assault by a prisoner and possession of prohibited items in a correctional facility, second-degree felonies.

On Feb. 13, Berg was arrested for investigation of shoplifting. He was taken to the Utah County Jail where, after being booked, police say he would have been eligible to bail out with a relatively low bail.

But while Berg was in the holding area waiting to be processed, he went into a secured area of the jail, waited until no deputies were looking, then snatched a pen and scissors from a counter and grabbed the booking clerk, according to charging documents.

Comment on this story

"Berg approached the female victim from behind and put her in a headlock, choking her from behind. He then placed the scissors on her neck and pressed them in and told her, 'I need to get out of here,'" the charges state.

The clerk called for help and Berg was quickly surrounded by deputies.

"Berg pressed the scissors into the victim's neck in an aggressive manner and yelled repeatedly, 'I will do it,'" according to the charges.

The deputies took Berg to the ground and placed him into custody. Bail was set at $30,000 cash only.