By Alisha Thompson
Charges of attempted murder are expected to be filed this week at the Murray County Courthouse against, Pedro Duran from Texas after a late night incident at Turner Falls Park on July 3.
A total of five Davis Police officers, Murray County EMS, AirEvac and the Davis Fire Department assisted in saving a man’s life during the busy Fourth of July weekend. Nearly 6,000 people in the park for the day and bad reception not allowing the initial call for help to go out over the handheld radio added another layer of difficulty to this already challenging incident.
Officer Randall Carter received a call from Murray County Dispatch at 11:35 p.m. that a person was stabbed at what later turned out to be the Butterly Loop at Turner Falls Park. He arrived on scene three minutes later after being notified that someone had been killed. He said he made his way to the campground and two large groups pointed to the main campsite where the fight had taken place. Officer Carter said that as he got closer to the area he heard an adult woman and a juvenile male screaming “you tried to kill him, don’t die.”
The victim was lying on the ground with blood coming from his neck. Officer Carter noted that the man’s wife had towels and napkins on the wound, applying pressure to the site. Two juvenile males told Officer Carter that “he did it,” pointing to their uncle, Duran. The victims wife said it wasn’t Duran.
Officer Carter said that Duran emerged from the vehicles with his head down and hands up. Officer Carter asked him if he hurt the victim and he said “yes, it was self defense.” After being asked a second time, Duran said “it was self defense.”
Officer Carter placed Duran under arrest, all the while the victim’s wife was still saying that he didn’t hurt her husband.
After an initial call on the handheld radio to dispatch failed, Officer Carter called dispatch on his personal cell and EMS and the Davis Fire Department were needed to carry the victim out to meet the helicopter.
Duran told Officer Carter they had a big family fight. Officers Gary Smith and Ryan Thomas arrived on scene to help.
Officer Thomas asked Duran if he stabbed the victim and he told him “no.” Officer Carter asked him why he told him he did stab the victim and he told him “he didn’t want to get shot.” Officer Carter told him he didn’t have a firearm when he arrived on scene. Duran then changed his story to three guys attacked them in the creek while they were swimming.
All eye-witness accounts indicated no one saw the stabbing and every person interviewed described a loud argument and fight at the campsite where the victim was discovered.
EMS, Davis Fire and Detective Seth Kemper arrived on scene. Assistant Police Chief Dee Gregory arrived shortly after.
While Detective Kemper spoke with Duran he noted blood coming from his knee and he told Detective Kemper it was from the victim when he was helping him.
Officer Carter and Detective Kemper took Duran to the Murray County Jail. During booking he asked what he was being charged with and Detective Kemper told him attempted murder.
Realizing that Duran was injured, he was required to be medically evaluated at Arbuckle Memorial Hospital before he could be booked into jail. He was taken to the hospital and cleared by the ER doctor. He was then booked into the Murray County Jail.
On July 4, Officer Carter traveled to OU Medical Center to speak with the victim. The victim did not recall the events taking place the night before. Officer Carter told him that they had Duran in custody for the stabbing to which the victim’s response was “well, if you play, you pay.”
The victim was stabbed a total of 6 times. Once to the left of his neck, just below the jaw line and 5 times to the torso. He is stable after surgery.