Second death in Utah child custody battle puzzles police |

Second death in Utah child custody battle puzzles police

Allen Best

PARK CITY, Utah – A dispute over child custody that turned exceedingly ugly may have ended. Two of the three protagonists have died, and authorities have cleared the third individual, a developer from Wasatch County, which is adjacent to Park City.

In August, Natalie Turner, 31, who was director of the chamber of commerce at Hailey, which is near Sun Valley, went to the Park City area accompanied by her boyfriend, David Charles Gayler, also 31. The two seemed intent on seizing Turner’s two children, ages 4 and 6, from their father, a developer in the Park City area.

What happened next depends largely upon the story told by the father and ex-husband, John Pochynok. According to the Park Record (Sept.7), he says he opened the door, expecting to see his children, and was instead shot. The boyfriend, Gayler, apparently did the shooting. Somehow, the three all ended up in a car, which was met by a sheriff’s deputy and a wildlife officer.

Based on reports, statements, and videotapes, authorities in Utah concluded that Turner, the chamber director, got out of the car, asked the officers to shoot her, and then aimed generally at them before pulling the trigger, but with no result. She asked again, then aimed again, and this time the officers shot her.

The boyfriend was jailed, but was found hanging from his neck by a sheet tied to a stall in a bathroom. The father of the two was reported to be at home coalescing from his wounds. He was shot twice with a .357 handgun.

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