CEDAR CITY — A man accused of attempting to strangle a woman with a washer hose and his bare hands at a Cedar City laundromat one year ago has been found guilty of aggravated burglary and attempted murder.

Booking photo of Zackry Izaac Ross, Cedar City, Utah, February 2023 | Photo courtesy of Iron County Sheriff’s Office, St. George News / Cedar City News

After deliberating for approximately 90 minutes Wednesday afternoon at the end of a two-day trial, an eight-member jury found Zackry Izaac Ross, 38, guilty of two first-degree felony counts. 

The aggravated burglary charge carries a possible penalty of five years to life in prison, while the attempted murder charge carries a potential sentence of three years to life. 

Ross’s sentencing has been scheduled for April 8 before 5th District Judge Matthew L. Bell.

According to court documents, the incident took place on Feb. 15, 2023, when an employee of the business called the police to have a man, identified as Ross, removed from the premises.

“(Ross) was told by officers at that time that he was not allowed to return to the business, or he would be arrested or cited,” the affidavit states. “The male left and took a black rubber hose with him. A few minutes later, officers were told Ross had returned to the business. The owner of the business was watching events in real time on cameras in the building. The owner then reported that Ross was attacking the victim, who had asked him to leave previously.”

The arresting officer wrote that when he returned to the scene, “I saw Ross, with the same blue hoodie and jeans, on top of the victim, holding her on the ground. I had to physically remove Ross from off of the victim to stop the assault. The victim stated that Ross had wrapped the hose around her neck and strangled her with it. The victim had marks on her neck from the assault.”

Fifth District Courthouse, Cedar City, Utah, April 15, 2021 | File photo by Jeff Richards, St. George News / Cedar City News

Over the course of this week’s two-day trial presided over by Bell, jurors heard testimony from multiple witnesses, including the victim herself, police officers and medical experts.

“We are thankful for the jury’s service and careful deliberation in this case,” Trajan Evans, deputy county attorney with the Iron County Attorney’s Office, said in a written statement on Thursday. “Their decision is reflective of the strong evidence that was presented to them throughout the trial.”

Evans also noted the determined efforts the woman herself and the intervening Cedar City Police officer made in halting the attack. 

“But for the victim’s incredible strength to fend off the defendant’s attack for nearly two and half minutes and Officer Aaron Condie showing up in the nick of time to stop the attack, this situation was likely seconds away from becoming fatal,” Evans added.

As previously reported, on Jan. 16, 2023, approximately one month before the laundromat incident, Ross and another man were arrested following a traffic stop for a taillight violation in Cedar City. Ross faces several charges associated with that still-pending case, including failure to stop at command of police, a third-degree felony; possession of a forgery device, a third-degree felony; drug possession, a class A misdemeanor; and driving without insurance, a class C misdemeanor.

“The earlier case has not resolved yet,” Evans said, adding, “Negotiations are still ongoing.”

Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2024, all rights reserved.