NEPHI — A man booked into jail for investigation of murder last month is now out of jail as the investigation into the woman's death continues.
Cody Alexander Young, 42, was booked into Juab County Jail on Oct. 13 after the body of Jan Pearson-Jenkins, 64, was found on a sagebrush hillside about a mile from where the two of them are believed to have gone camping last month in the Silver City area of Juab County.
Sheriff's deputies at the time believed he was responsible for her death. But no formal criminal charges connected to her death have been filed against him.
“We know there is a deceased individual, but we want the expertise and the final report from the medical examiner’s office to help us make that final determination of the charges,” said Juab County Sheriff Doug Anderson.
Young was charged last month with possession or use of a controlled substance and unlawful purchase or transfer of a dangerous weapon, both class A misdemeanors.
“He pleaded guilty as charged a week or two ago. The judge released him at the request of the defense. I objected to that,” said Juab County Attorney Ryan Peters.
Young was released and ordered to wear a GPS ankle monitor and is required to remain in Utah until he is sentenced in that case in January.
Peters said if the autopsy results support criminal charges in Jenkins' death, Young can be prosecuted.
Investigators say Young went camping with Jenkins, but left her stranded. Her nude body was later found about a mile away from where the two had been camping.
Jenkins' brother said Young sent him text messages on Oct. 5 saying the two had been in an argument and that he left her in the Silver City/Eureka area.
About two hours after the body was found, rangers at Yuba State Park spotted Young and his van near Yuba Lake, about 45 miles from the campsite. He was questioned by detectives and arrested in connection with Pearson-Jenkins' death.
The van the two were camping in remains in police custody as potential evidence.
Jenkins' family is very anxious for the report from the medical examiner and still hopes to see justice in Pearson-Jenkins' death.
“We want to be able to give as much accurate information back to the family as we can, and we want an accurate and a complete and a thorough resolution of the case,” Anderson said.
The sheriff said a final report from the medical examiner should be available in a few weeks.