The Summit County Attorney’s Office filed first-degree murder charges against Highland Estates resident James Kip Ramsdell Wednesday in connection with the shooting death of his roommate and tenant, John Krieg.
On October 7 at approximately 6:50 a.m., a woman contacted 911 emergency dispatchers saying she had found a body lying in the grass of a Highland Estates home.
Deputies with the Summit County Sheriff's Office arrived at the scene near 217 Countryside Circle in Park City and found 50-year-old John Krieg lying on his back with numerous injuries to his face and a single gunshot wound to his chest, according to a probable cause statement filed in Third District Court.
While deputies were trying to secure the crime scene, an intoxicated man approached them and was asked to leave.
After securing the crime scene, police later identified that man as 58-year-old Ramsdell who owns the home where Krieg’s body was found.
Investigators spoke with Ramsdell and another man who was at the home. That man told deputies that he, Krieg and a third man rented the basement of the home from Ramsdell.
Ramsdell was heavily intoxicated and had a gunshot wound to his left hand and an injury to his pinky and ring finger, officials said.
Deputies said that Ramsdell initially told them that he knew nothing about the body outside, but then claimed that someone had shot Krieg and then said, “maybe I killed him. I don’t know.”
Ramsdell was taken to the hospital and treated for the gunshot wound to his hand.
Court documents reveal that when interviewed, the basement tenant told deputies that he was awoken by a gunshot in the home around 1 a.m.
The tenant said that Ramsdell and Krieg had some sort of argument and that Ramsdell said he may have shot himself in the hand.
At some point during the night, the tenant told police that Ramsdell said, “we need to kill him or something” in reference to Krieg.
Later in the morning, the tenant told officials that Ramsdell and Krieg were arguing in the front yard. When Ramsdell returned inside without Krieg, the tenant told officials he went outside to look for Krieg and found him lying on the ground without a pulse.
The tenant did not call deputies out of fear because Ramsdell was still in possession of the gun, officials said.
While at the hospital, police said that Ramsdell had injuries to his right hand and knuckles which appeared consistent with having been in a fight.
Due to Ramsdell’s level of intoxication, he was interviewed by investigators only after a portable breath test showed negative for alcohol.
Post-Miranda, officials said that Ramsdell stated that he could have shot Krieg and admitted to owning a .22 caliber revolver.
After obtaining a search warrant for the home, officials located a .22 caliber pistol which had one empty chamber, two spent casings, and two live rounds.
Ramsdell was arrested and is being held without bail in the Summit County Jail.
If convicted, Ramsdell could face 15 years to life in prison.