Judge binds Smithfield man over for trial for allegedly trying to kill father during drunken brawl

Booking photo for Ethan Drake Mortensen (Courtesy: Cache County Jail)

LOGAN — A 20-year-old Smithfield man accused of trying to kill his father is being bound over for trial. Ethan D. Mortensen was arrested earlier this month following a fight outside his family’s apartment.

Mortensen participated by web conference for a preliminary hearing Monday afternoon in 1st District Court. He had been charged with attempted murder, a first-degree felony.

During the hearing, prosecutors provided testimony from police and a witness who claimed Mortensen attacked his father early on the morning of July 9. The assault took place at an apartment near 555 S. 100 E.

The witness had called 911 reporting that he allegedly overheard Mortensen arguing with his father. The man watched as the argument turned physical and the suspect pulled a hatchet and knives out of a backpack.

The witness claimed Mortensen had been drinking heavily. As the fight continued, the suspect raised the hatchet over the victim, prompting the witness to intervene and tackle Mortensen.

The victim told officers that Mortensen went after him with the knife and hatchet, saying he was going to kill him. He tried to stop the suspect and received a laceration to his hand.

Officers found the weapons and took them as evidence. They also interviewed Mortensen, who allegedly admitted to “freaking out” because he was mad at his father.

Mortensen didn’t testify during Monday’s hearing. At one point during the witness’ testimony, he interrupted denying the statement with an expletive.

Judge Brian Cannell quickly scolded Mortensen, telling him not to speak like that in his courtroom ever.

Prosecutors have filed additional weapon possession charges against Mortensen.

Judge Cannell bound Mortensen over for trial on the attempted murder charge. He ordered him to remain in jail and appear again August 10 on the new charges.


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