Son shoots parents in Castle Dale home
According to Emery County Sheriff LaMar Guymon, around 9 a.m. on Wednesday morning, Oct. 21 there was a double homicide shooting in Castle Dale. A Castle Dale couple, William, 51 and Charmaine Sharp, 54 was shot by their adult son, Peter Sharp. They were pronounced dead at the scene. The son age 26 has been apprehended and is being held at the Emery County detention center. There were four other children in the home at the time of the shooting. The investigation is being conducted by the Emery County Sheriff's Office detectives and a thorough investigation is ongoing at this time.
At approximately 9:10 a.m. a 911 call came into the Emery County Sheriff's dispatch. This call was lost. Sgt. Bliss Mead was able to GPS the call and get an address. Dispatcher Maureen Copatch immediately sent all units available to the scene in Castle Dale. A second 911 call was made by a teenaged daughter in the home. She said her brother had shot her parents.
It is reported that brother Peter Sharp, shortly after 9 a.m. went into a back bedroom in the home and with a shotgun, shot his father William. He then shot his mother Charmaine in the hallway leading out of the kitchen. Charmaine was fixing breakfast at the time and getting ready to start the children's lessons for the day, which was a normal routine in the home. The father, William was speaking on the phone to their eldest daughter Lisa at the time he was shot.
After Peter shot his parents, his siblings, a 15 year old brother and teenaged sister wrestled the gun away from their brother; Peter left the home. Peter then went down the hill and was walking along Main Street without any shoes. Ambulance Supervisor, Jim Gordon had just heard the call and was approaching the Sharp home when he saw the man on the street without shoes and thought it strange. He notified dispatch of the man walking down the street and proceeded to the Sharp home, where he examined the bodies of the parents.
Sheriff Guymon said Lt. Bill Downard and Deputy Clayton Bell entered the home to make sure the shooter was not still there. Gordon examined the bodies and determined there was no need to call an ambulance as both parties were deceased at the scene. Lt. Downard put out the information on the suspect including his description and that he had left the scene on foot.
Sgt. Tom Harrison and Deputy Shaun Bell raced to the parking lot of Stewarts and ALCO to look for the suspect. The suspect who had been barefoot subsequently went into the Family Dollar store where he stole a pair of house slippers which he was wearing as he walked across the parking lot in front of ALCO. Sgt. Harrison was talking to the suspect and he acted like he was going to bolt and run. Sgt. Harrison instructed Peter that they were going to put handcuffs on him which they proceeded to do and there was a small scuffle at that time. The suspect was taken without further incident to the Emery County detention center where he is being held without bond.
Sheriff Guymon and Capt. Kyle Ekker were out of town at the time of the shootings. They were attending a graduation for Deputy Robby Riley from police academy. Upon hearing the news, they returned home to supervise the investigation. Lt. Downard was first on the scene and supervised the investigation there. All available units responded and secured the crime scene for the gathering of evidence by the detectives, Det. Sgt. Robert Blackburn, Sgt. Norm Vuksinick and Det. John Barnett who immediately responded to the scene.
The Sharp children had left the home with a family member and waited in a vehicle outside the home.
Sheriff Guymon held a press conference in the afternoon and told some of what the children had reported. The Sharp children said there hadn't been anything unusual or out of the ordinary that went on at the home the previous evening or the morning of the shooting. They reported there weren't any confrontations or arguments between the parents, themselves or their brother Peter. They said there was no explanation for the shooting. They said sometimes they had to treat Peter like a 5 year old due to his mental condition.
Sheriff Guymon reported that Peter during questioning was confused and didn't know what was going on and seemed to have no memory of the shooting. Sheriff Guymon told the media, the family needs time to grieve and asked for privacy. The grown children of the family still live in the area and have taken the minor children into their homes.
"The young man (Peter) has suffered from mental issues and that's probably the basis for what happened today. The Sharp's have 10 children and four of them are still in the home. The youngest child is 8 and Peter, 26 was the oldest. The children feared for their own lives at the time they wrestled the gun away from their brother and should be considered heroes for doing that. The children are very distraught and emotionally upset. The older siblings are taking care of the younger ones and they do have a good support system.
"William has been a coal miner for 30 plus years and the family has lived at their current home for approximately 20 years. In all that time, we (Sheriff's Office) have received one call to that residence. It was a few years back and the call was concerning Peter behaving aggresively and we talked to him at that time. There haven't been any calls or problems involving the Sheriff's Office since that time. I am very proud of the way my deputies and officers have done their job in this matter. It is very traumatic for them, but they did what they had to do and they are very capable," said Sheriff Guymon.
The Emery County Attorney's Office has filed an information in the Seventh District Court charging Peter Simon Sharp with two counts of criminal homicide, aggravated murder, domestic violence and one count of aggravated assault, domestic violence in connection with the shooting deaths of William P. Sharp and Charmaine Edith Sharp on Oct. 21, 2009.
The defendant is currently being held without bail in the Emery County jail. His first appearance is set before Judge George M. Harmond Jr. on Oct. 27 at 3 p.m.