- Megan Grunwald is facing more than a dozen charges for a fatal car chase last month
- Sheriff’s deputy Cory Wride approached Grunwald and her boyfriend on the side of the road because he thought they were having car trouble
- While sitting in his squad car, 27-year-old boyfriend Jose Angel Garcia-Juaregui opened up the rear window and shot Wride dead
- The murder set off an hours long car chase which ended in officers fatally shooting Garcia-Juaregui
- Now Grunwald is being charged with Wride’s first-degree murder and several other felonies as an adult
Prosecutors say a 17-year-old girl was pregnant and high on meth when she and her boyfriend shot and killed a sheriff’s deputy who was just trying to help them with car trouble on the side of a Utah road last month.
Deputy Cory Wride was sitting in his patrol car when Megan Dakota Grunwald’s 27-year-old boyfriend Jose Angel Garcia-Juaregui opened the rear window of their truck and shot him dead on January 30.
That murder set off a hours-long car chase across Utah that eventually ended in officers shooting Garcia-Juaregui in the head, and he died the following day.
But Grunwald survived, and now she’s being tried as an adult for a dozen felonies and two misdemeanors related to Wride’s death and the ensuing car chase – though she never pulled a trigger.
Documents filed in court shed light on the dramatic crime spree that ended in death on I-15 roadway last month.
Wride stopped to help Grunwald and her boyfriend around 1pm because he thought they were having car trouble and wanted to help.
Grunwald was driving the car with her boyfriend in the passenger’s seat. She gave Wride her driver’s license but Garcia-Juearegui gave the officer a false name.
Wride went back and forth between the pick-up truck registered to Grunwald’s mother and his squad car three times, trying to figure out Garcia-Juaregui’s actual identity.
Crime couple: The chase ended when sheriff’s deputies shot Jose Angel Garcia-Juaregui (left) in the head and his girlfriend Grunwald (right) was arrested. Garcia-Juaregui died the following day in the hospital
It was while sitting in his squad car that Garcia-Juaregui opened the rear window of the truck’s cab and started shooting at the officer and his girlfriend sped off.
Wride died and his body wasn’t found until 45 minutes later when another deputy was sent out to check up on him.
Fellow deputy Greg Sherwood tracked the couple’s truck down around 3pm and attempted to pull the couple over.
But Grunwald wouldn’t stop, and actually ‘aggresively applied the brakes’ to shorten the distance between the two vehicles while her boyfriend started shooting.
Garcia-Juregui hit Sherwood in the head, critically injuring the officer. Sherwood eventually recovered from the injury and returned home Tuesday after spending 19 days in the hospital.
After hitting Sherwood, the couple hit another roadblock when their truck crashed after hitting spikes laid on the road near Nephi, Utah.
Instead of surrendering to police, Grunwald helped flagged down a minivan and her boyfriend carjacked the vehicle from a woman who was on her way home from a parent-teacher conference.
This is just one of the instances prosecutors are using to argue that Grunwald was not being forced by her boyfriend to take part in the crime spree.
The couple didn’t get far with the hijacked car and crashed again on a second strip of spikes.
After hitting the spikes, police say Grunwald crossed into traffic and tried to strike another vehicle on purpose.
Juab County sheriff’s deputies were finally able to stop the couple when they shot Garcia-Juaregui in the head.
While he was lying on the ground, Grunwald yelled at officers: ‘You f****** shot him’
The officers kept the couple seperated as they arrested Grunwald and redied her boyfriend to be taken to the hospital, which displeased a dying Garcia-Juaregui.
‘You not going to let me kiss my girl with my last dying breath,’ he asked. He died the following day at the hospital
Grunwald, meanwhile, was booked in jail and is still being held on $1million bail. Her first court hearing is scheduled for next Monday.
Friends who knew the couple told investigators that Grunwald was carrying Garcia-Juaregui’s child and the two planned to marry in August when she turned 18.
On her Facebook page, Grunwald posted a cover photo which reads:’ I’m just a girl who is in love with the most annoying, cutest, funniest, nicest, and completely perfect guy in the world’.
After their marriage, the couple planned to move to Mexico. They had been living at Grunwald’s mother’s home in Draper ‘for several months’.
Grunwald had allegedly been buying meth for her boyfriend and tested positive for the drug after her arrest. Prosecutors have not yet said whether Garcia-Juaregui had meth in his system during the car chase but drug paraphernalia was found in the truck.
She faces 12 felony charges which include the first-degree murder of Wride, attempted aggravated murder for critically injuring Sherwood and aggravated robbery for the car jacking.