On the night of November 21 and 22, Kane County citizen Dustin Pederson was safely booked by the Salt Lake City Police Department, in coordination with Kane County Sheriff’s Office, for the murder of Nichole Olsen. Pederson turned himself in to the Kane County Sheriff’s Office on November 21, and provided a report of the situation, along with the vehicle and weapon involved in the shooting.
The police report, which can be publicly accessed on SLCPD’s website, states the incident occurred early Sunday, November 20. Police responded to a gunshot report sometime around 1:00 a.m. The victim had already been taken to a hospital in critical condition, and SLCPD detectives began investigating the incident. Most of the information contained in this report comes directly from the SLCPD’s official press release regarding the incident.
According to that investigation, Pederson had an altercation with Olsen’s boyfriend at a club in downtown Salt Lake City, during which the club’s security asked Pederson and a friend to leave the club. The two groups encountered each other again later in the evening in a parking lot around 300 West South Temple and a second argument occurred, which escalated into a physical confrontation. Witnesses to the event report Pederson reaching for his waistband multiple times over the course of the incident. According to Pederson’s own report to the Kane County Sheriff’s Office, he drew his gun and fired a warning shot to scare the people involved in the fight and put an end to the confrontation. Olsen was hit, and was taken to the hospital by a friend - the report did not specify whether she survived long enough to receive medical attention, or if she had died before arrival. Pederson and his friend left the scene in a dark colored BMW, as seen on surveillance footage near the event - records found by the police show Pederson purchasing such a BMW recently, and when he turned himself in, the gun he reported to have used in the shooting was located in the trunk of the BMW.
Pederson was booked into Salt Lake City Metro Jail by SLCPD’s homicide squad on a single count of murder. Pederson’s family expressed their condolences to Olsen’s loved ones. Individuals close to Pederson stated that he “didn’t act with malice of intent … but with a gun, you never know where it’s going to go in that sort of situation. [We] trust Tracy, [the Sheriff], implicitly. Dustin wanted to turn himself in, it was the right thing to do, so he did it.”
As of this article’s writing, Pederson has yet to be formally charged, and is being held by the SLCPD awaiting a court date and arraignment. The police report reminds readers that all charges are only allegations, and that all individuals are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.