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Daggett Jail escapees indicted on federal charges

A federal grand jury has indicted two convicted killers who escaped from the Daggett County Jail.

The indictment unsealed Wednesday charges Danny Gallegos and Juan Diaz-Arevalo with carjacking, possession of a stolen firearm, and being a felon in possession of a firearm.

The U.S. Attorney's Office in Utah said it would not rule out the possibility of more charges.

"We would always be open to more if an investigation led to other potential violations of federal law," said U.S. Attorney's spokeswoman Melodie Rydalch. "Right now we're charging specifically the crimes that occurred on the 29th."

The federal charges stem from the inmates' Sept. 29 kidnapping of a 79-year-old man at a camper trailer along the Utah-Wyoming border. After escaping from the Daggett County Jail on Sept. 23, Diaz-Arevalo and Gallegos hid out in the wilderness, living off of spring water and food they had hidden away in their pockets.

They came upon retired police officer Bill Johnson's camper trailer, tying him up and stealing his SUV. Johnson managed to free himself and get help. A police chase with the fugitives ended in Rock Springs, Wyo., when Gallegos was shot and Diaz-Arevalo was tackled and taken into custody.

Federal prosecutors said no court appearance has been scheduled yet for Diaz-Arevalo and Gallegos.

"We would like to bring them in together and we will wait and see how Mr. Gallegos' physical condition progresses," Rydalch said.

Gallegos, 49, is recovering from a gunshot wound and is listed in fair condition at University Hospital. Diaz-Arevalo, 27, is back at the Utah State Prison.

The Daggett County Attorney has already filed second-degree felony escape charges against the inmates. Police in Sweetwater County, Wyo., said they are declining to pursue charges at this time.