Two men were arrested after allegedly rigging booby traps near a trail in South Fork Canyon.
Benjamin Rutkowski, 19, of Orem, UT and Kai Christensen, 21, of Provo, UT were booked into the Utah County Jail for investigation of reckless endangerment, a class A misdemeanor.
Sgt. Spencer Cannon of the Utah County Sheriff’s Office said a forest service officer was patrolling the Big Springs Trail area when he noticed what appeared to be a trip wire near the entrance of a rudimentary shelter. The wire was connected to a device that if tripped, would have sent a ball of sharpened sticks swinging toward the face or head of a person entering the shelter. Another trip wire was set up at a second entrance, which would have caused a person to fall down on sharpened sticks placed in the ground.
Cannon said the shelter was one of many in an area that is frequently visited by hikers and campers. “People don’t go up expecting this and they shouldn’t have to,” he said.
After identifying the traps, the forest service officer worked with deputies from the sheriff’s office to contact individuals familiar with the shelter on social media websites. After speaking with witnesses, officials were able to identify Rutkowski and Christensen.
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