The man was identified Wednesday morning as Paul R. Jaramillo, 41, of Ogden. He’s under guard at the University of Utah Hospital.
Centerville Police Lt. Paul Child said police were called to the Chevron Top Stop, 392 N. Market Place Drive, at 12:42 a.m. on reports of a suspicious man. Two minutes later, employees of the Wendy’s restaurant, 363 N. Market Place Drive, called 911 reporting a man breaking into the restaurant.
When officers arrived, Child said they found a Hispanic male lying under an SUV in the parking lot of the Top Stop. He had been run over, was unconscious and appeared to have life-threatening injuries. As officers were calling for medical assistance and coordinating a landing zone for a helicopter, a 23-year-old woman approached officers alleging she had been kidnapped at knifepoint by the injured man.
At that point, Child said officers began receiving additional information indicating Jaramillo allegedly had attempted a number of robberies and assaults in addition to the kidnapping.
The woman told police that as she was leaving work at the Smith’s Marketplace on 600 East in Salt Lake City, Jaramillo forced his way into her car and threatened her with a knife. He then allegedly forced her to drive him towards Ogden.
Child said as they approached Centerville, the woman told Jaramillo the car needed gas, so they exited, pulling into the Top Stop to fill up. Child said Jaramillo reportedly went into the store, and she took the opportunity to flee. She ran into a nearby business area and hid behind some shrubs.
Child said Jaramillo then attempted to rob the store while trying to hide his face. Child said Jaramillo claimed to have a gun and attempted to climb over the counter to get at the clerk, but the clerk pushed him back. Child said no gun was found.
Child said Jaramillo then “suddenly and without provocation” attacked a customer in the head. Jaramillo then allegedly demanded the customer’s keys, but the customer got up and pushed the suspect into the parking lot.
Police say Jaramillo then ran over to Wendy’s and began pounding on the windows, trying to get in. Two of the restaurant's employees told police they thought they saw a gun, so they hid in a back room and locked themselves in and called police. Police contend Jaramillo forced the door to the restaurant open, setting off an alarm. He allegedly confronted two other Wendy’s employees who fled into the parking lot.
Child said Jaramillo purportedly saw the male customer who had been assaulted leaving in his SUV and apparently ran to the front of the vehicle pounding on the hood, demanding the victim surrender the vehicle. Sometime during the encounter Child said Jaramillo fell and was run over by the SUV.
He was treated at the scene and airlifted to the hospital. Child said Jaramillo was unconscious and unresponsive.
“At this point, it is unclear what the motive was behind the bizarre behavior of the suspect,” Child said, adding they can find no connection between the woman and suspect. None of the victims were seriously hurt.