Tooele Transcript Bulletin – News in Tooele, Utah

July 5, 2018
Man who threatened Vasa employee sentenced to prison

The Nevada man who threatened an employee at Vasa Fitness in Tooele, before fleeing to the roof of the gym and jumping off, was sentenced in 3rd District Court Tuesday. 

Randy Lee Gamwell, 56, was sentenced to one to 15 years in the Utah State Prison for second-degree felony aggravated burglary. Gamwell pleaded guilty to the amended charge on May 15; charges of third-degree felony aggravated assault and second-degree receive or transfer a stolen vehicle were dismissed as part of the plea deal. 

The charges stem from an April 9 incident, in which Gamwell pulled a BB gun on a maintenance employee at VASA Fitness and locked himself in the maintenance room at the gym, according to a probable cause statement. Tooele City police were dispatched to the gym at 2:10 p.m. on reports of a man with a gun. 

When officers arrived on scene, Gamwell was found lying on the ground near the northeast corner of the building on Garden Street, the statement said. During their approach, officers found a broken BB gun on the ground near Gamwell. 

Due to his injuries from falling off the roof, Gamwell was transported by ambulance to a medical helicopter pad, the statement said. An officer spoke with Gamwell after reading him his rights but Gamwell said he didn’t know what happened. 

The following day, Tooele City police spoke with Gamwell again, according to the probable cause statement. At this point, Gamwell admitted to knowing he was wanted by police and seeing his picture on the news. 

Gamwell told officers he saw a helicopter when he entered Vasa Fitness and assumed it was a police helicopter, the statement said. He said he was hiding in the maintenance room when the employee came in, which scared him and he yelled at them. 

Gamwell said he climbed onto the roof and noticed a small cable, which he thought he could use to swing to the pole and climb down, the statement said. When police asked about the BB gun, Gamwell said he purchased it at a local sporting good store. He said he was holding it when he yelled at the Vasa Fitness employee but denied pointing it at them. 

Gamwell said he bailed out of jail in Nevada and didn’t want to return, so he fled to Tooele, according to the probable cause statement.

 

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