Man Makes False Claims In Murder Case

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The Payson Police Department arrested a man for aggravated assault last week who claimed to have information about the March murder of Ira Eastman.

"We had an aggravated assault in which our suspect claimed he had information about our homicide case," Police Sgt. Rod Mamero said.

According to Payson Police Lt. Don Engler, at around 8 p.m., April 26, someone alerted Mamero to an assault that had just occurred at the 1100 block of South McLane.

"Sgt. Mamero responded and determined there had been an aggravated assault, possibly with a baseball bat," Engler said. "It had also been reported that one of the suspects had a gun."

Mamero said a 27-year-old man had been choked and hit with a baseball bat.

Officers searched for the suspect, who was reportedly driving a white Chevrolet Cavalier.

Through interviews, officers determined that one of the parties involved in the assault was 33-year-old Jared Olsen.

Mamero parked near Olsen's home on Glade Lane to see if there was any activity when a report of a prowler on Airport Road came over the radio.

"The other officers were busy with an incorrigible juvenile call and our victim, who had been taken to the ER," Mamero said. "On my way to the other call, I saw (Olsen). I stopped him and spoke to him."

Deputies from the Gila County Sheriff's Office assisted with other calls the police could not get to. Mamero said it was at that point that Olsen claimed he had information about the kidnapping and murder of Eastman.

Eastman was murdered in March after being taken from his home. The Eastman case is still open and no arrests have been made directly related to the homicide.

Police detectives were called out to question Olsen, but according to Engler, the information "did not pan out." He declined to elaborate on the nature of the information.

Olsen was charged with aggravated assault and booked into the Gila County jail.

The victim was treated for his injuries and later released.

Engler said the assault investigation is ongoing.

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