Utah has some of the toughest penalties for gun charges in the nation. Roberto Miramontes Roman knows all too well the obstacles. In 2012, a Utah court found Roman found not guilty of aggravated murder charges in connection with the death of Millard County sheriff’s deputy Josie Greathouse Fox back in January of 2010. But Roman’s problems are hardly over. He is expected to return to federal court to face the same charges. His Salt Lake City criminal defense attorneys have voiced their concerns that new charges brought against him amount to double jeopardy. However, those claims were rejected by a federal judge and a federal appeals court.
Roman is currently serving a 10-year sentence for tampering with evidence and possession of a dangerous weapon. Like many high-profile cases involving gun charges in Salt Lake City, Roman’s is highly complex. He entered the United States illegally and also had possession of an illegal firearm. Seven years ago, Roman was stopped Fox for a traffic violation. The two had a heated exchange that ultimately ended with Fox’s death due to a gunshot wound. Roman originally confessed to killing Fox. But when he took the stand, he changed his story and claimed Fox’s brother, Ryan Gatehouse, had shot and killed her. According to Roman, Gatehouse did not realize he shot his sister until after the shooting. Roman also claimed Gatehouse had made threats and forced him to confess. There was also indisputable evidence that Roman and Ryan Gatehouse had smoked methamphetamine the night Fox was killed. Although Roman’s fingerprints were on the weapon, he claims it was because he held it before Gatehouse reached across and discharged the gun.
The death of a police officer is always a major tragedy. Although the Roman case is complex, it is hardly unusual. Many people facing gun charges in Salt Lake City have also been the subject of police intimidation. Roman alleges he was forced to admit to guilt. A Salt Lake City jury found there was not sufficient evidence to convict Roman for aggravated murder. However, law enforcement is not giving up easily. The U.S. Attorney’s Office is now pursuing federal charges and has filed an 11-count indictment, including a charge to intentionally kill a police officer in the line of duty.
The Roman case further illustrates that overcoming gun charges does not necessarily end in a Utah courtroom. If a person is suspected of transporting guns across state and international borders, they are the subject of federal prosecution. Needless to say, a Salt Lake City criminal defense attorney will be paying close attention to this case.
Are You Facing Gun Charges in Salt Lake City?
If you are accused of illegally possession or use of a firearm, it is important to seek representation from a criminal defense lawyer that will protect your rights. For more than 25 years, Salt Lake City gun charges attorney David Paul White has represented countless men and women by utilizing an aggressive and comprehensive approach to help place clients in the best position to succeed. To learn more, contact the law office today and take the first step to your clear your name and regain your freedom.