Today: Feb 21 , 2019

Murder Suspect in Custody

22 June 2018   Officer Dave Fuller

The story she told led law enforcement on a manhunt.

The Prescott Police Department has been actively investigating a homicide at a Prescott residence located in the 1500 Block Southview Drive. 

On June 21st, 2018 at approximately 11:50 am a call was received from the Arizona Department of Public Safety advising they located a vehicle on Interstate 17 at Highway 179 which was occupied by a lone female subject whose hands were tied to the steering wheel and reported that she had been kidnapped from her residence in Prescott.  DPS requested Prescott Officers conduct a welfare check at the home on Southview Drive. Upon making entry, a deceased male subject was located inside the residence. He was later identified as 66 year old Prescott resident Jay Michael Freeman.

The female subject was identified as 57 year old Prescott resident Sharalyn Stura. Ms Stura reported to officers that an unknown suspect kidnapped her from her residence and forced her to drive to an area near Montezuma’s Well in the Rimrock area. Ms. Stura told officers she was able to escape and drive away from the area.  Ms Stura stated that she drove toward the area of Interstate 17 and Highway 179 seeking help when a passerby finally stopped to assist her. 

Ms. Stura indicated that the suspect that kidnapped her was armed and fled on foot in the area around Montezuma’s Well and the Beaver Creek area just north of Rimrock. This information resulted in an extensive, coordinated search effort for the suspect involving several law enforcement agencies.  

Prescott Police Detectives assumed the investigation and obtained a search warrant for the residence. Evidence gathered at the residence as well as an interview of Ms Stura revealed conflicting information in Ms. Stura’s account of what had occurred. It was determined that the story provided by Stura concerning the kidnapping and suspect at large was completely fabricated. Stura admitted her involvement in the homicide and was booked into the Yavapai County Jail on one count of 1st Degree Murder. There are no suspects currently outstanding.

The Prescott Police Department would like to thank Sheriff Masher and all members of the Yavapai County Sheriff’s Office, as well as the Department of Public Safety for their assistance and dedication of resources to this incident. All efforts taken in the Montezuma’s Well and Rim Rock areas were made based on the information provided by what appeared to be a legitimate account of a serious violent crime. We appreciate the patience and understanding of the residents of that area, as we were proceeding with the utmost concern for their safety.