BURLEY — Two men were found guilty Monday for the September 2016 beating of a teen-aged boy hunting in the Sublett area.
Rodger Powell of Sandy, Utah, and Jeff Owen Smith of Eagle were found guilty by a Cassia County jury of felony injury to a child and misdemeanor interfering with a lawful hunt. Powell was also found guilty of felony aggravated battery.
Sentencing hearings for both men are set for 1:30 p.m. Nov. 13.
Powell and Smith were found not guilty of grand theft of a firearm, burglary and a lesser charge of unlawful entry. The jury also found Smith not guilty of aggravated battery and a lesser charge of battery.
The jury entered its verdicts after sending two questions to the judge asking for the complete transcripts of the witness testimonies — which were not available — and clarification on whether striking was the same as grabbing. The jury was told it had all the laws and definitions it needed to reach a verdict.
Edward Grant Horne was also charged with felony counts of grand theft, aggravated battery, injury to a child and misdemeanor interference with hunting. His jury trial slated for Aug. 8 has been vacated and a status conference for the case is scheduled for 9 a.m. Sept. 4 in Cassia County District Court.
The three were charged after police said they approached a 16-year-old boy who was hunting at 3175 E. 500 S., about 10 miles east of Malta. The boy said he stopped to spot deer and Powell approached and grabbed him by the throat and began punching him.
He said the men called him a “stupid poacher” and said the deer belonged to them, according to court records.
The boy claimed the men searched his pickup and took his .308 Remington rifle and told him they were going to shoot him with his own gun, kill and bury him.