Payson Man Convicted Of Attempted Murder

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Brett Allen Bell, 43, of Payson, has been found guilty of two counts of attempted first degree murder, four counts of aggravated assault, burglary in the first degree, and two counts of interfering with judicial proceedings.

A Gila County jury convicted Bell June 9, County Attorney Daisy Flores said.

Bell was accused of entering a Payson home in the early morning hours of Sept. 21, 2007 and then laying in wait for the arrival of the homeowners. Flores said Bell attacked both victims with a bat and threatened the homeowners with a .38 pistol.

The male victim was able to escape and go to a neighbor's house to call for help. Bell left the female victim for dead in her bedroom and fled the residence.

According to the account published in the Roundup at the time of Bell's arrest, police said the incident possibly stemmed from a personal matter between Bell and the female victim. Police said there had been a relationship between Bell and the woman.

Payson Police officers were dispatched to Rim View Road after they had received calls from two different parties, advising that they had been beaten with a bat and that there was also a gun involved.

An investigation by the Payson Police Department determined that Bell had entered the residence while no one was home without the permission of the homeowner and was armed with a bat-like billy-club and a gun.

Bell is scheduled to be sentenced in Payson on June 23 by Presiding Judge Peter Cahill. Bell is facing a possible prison sentence of more than 60 years.

Flores said the diligent efforts of Detective Les Barr and other members of the Payson Police Department helped to bring Bell to justice.

Flores said also the case was dependent on the victims standing up to their attacker in court and describing the details of the assault, Flores said.

"I can only imagine the fear both of these individuals experienced during and after the assault. Their trial testimony was essential to this conviction and they are to be commended for their efforts," Flores said.

Flores and Deputy County Attorney Raymond Geiser prosecuted the case.

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