Printed on: January 22, 2013

Shooting under investigation

By Ruth Brown
rbrown@postregister.com

On a quiet and frigid Saturday afternoon, it was the ringing of the phone that alerted residents in this part of rural Ammon that something was wrong.

The county's emergency alert system sent messages to 760 telephone numbers within a mile radius of the scene of a fatal shooting, authorities said.

The message warned residents that two suspects, who were considered armed and dangerous, were in the area. Those receiving the message were advised to lock their doors and stay inside.

RaeAnn Ricks got the message from a neighbor. Ricks didn't recognize the alert's phone number on her caller ID, so she didn't pick up. She later answered her phone when she saw her neighbor's number.

She said about the only exciting thing that ever happens in this neighborhood during winter is the occasional car sliding off the icy road.

After the call, Ricks and her husband, Ray, took their 9-month-old daughter, Lily, downstairs, locked the doors and hoped for the best. Her 16-year-old brother, Aaron Long, was with them.

The alert system calls pierced the quiet, foreshadowing news that a murder had taken place nearby.

Kristy Aschliman, 21, was found dead on the side of the road with "multiple" gunshot wounds to the head, Bonneville County Sheriff's Detective Sgt. Karl Noah said. She died shortly before 1 p.m. Her body was found against a wooden fence on the 5100 block East Lincoln Road adjacent to Ricks' parents' house.

Noah said witnesses told police that Aschliman's gray Ford Tempo was traveling east on Lincoln Road when the driver attempted to make a U-turn, causing the car to slide into the ditch.

It was then that Aschliman, of Idaho Falls, and two men reportedly got out of the car and ran, according to police reports.

One of the men was believed to be Adan A. Arroyo, 22, of Blackfoot.

Arroyo reportedly chased Aschliman and shot her with a handgun. Noah did not disclose the gun's caliber.

"Witnesses reported hearing between two to five shots," Noah said.

Arroyo later was located at a residence at 2000 N. 31st East and arrested. He is charged with first-degree murder and remained in custody at Bonneville County Jail on Monday without bond.

Noah did not know the motive behind the shooting, but said detectives have a few theories. He declined to say whether Arroyo and Aschliman knew each other.

Noah refused to release the name of the second man believed to have been present during the incident, but said that man was arrested for an outstanding warrant.

Annette Guthrie also was home when the shooting occurred, and while she did not hear gunshots, she did hear the commotion of ambulances, police cars and fire trucks roaring down her road.

Guthrie's home is near the street where Aschliman was found.

Shortly after the incident, Guthrie received a phone alert about the incident.

A few hours later, an alert that a suspect or suspects had been apprehended was broadcast to the same area residents.

"We were really grateful for the message," Guthrie said. "The message was clear and concise. ... So we locked the doors and did what was asked, and we really appreciated both of the calls."

Saturday wasn't Arroyo's first run-in with the law.

He has prior convictions for petit theft, possession of alcohol by a minor, felony malicious injury to property and vandalism, according to the Idaho State Repository.

Aschliman also had several pending charges at the time of her death, according to the repository.

On Jan. 4, she was charged with possession of drug paraphernalia, possession of a felony controlled substance, possession of a misdemeanor controlled substance and driving without privileges. She also had a pending case for driving under the influence, which stemmed from a November arrest.

Aschliman's cases had not been adjudicated.

Arroyo has his initial court appearance today.

First-degree murder is punishable by life in prison with the possibility of a death sentence.

Ruth Brown can be reached at 542-6750. Follow on Twitter: @ruthbrown1. Comment on this story on Post Talk at www.postregister.com/posttalk/.