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Before police found David Driscoll's ex-girlfriend's body in her Orem apartment, Driscoll told a relative he shot her several times in the back "in self-defense," according to court documents released this week.
In a search warrant unsealed Tuesday, police detailed events leading to the discovery of 27-year-old Brittany Engstrom's body Dec. 28, and Driscoll's suicide during a standoff with police in Eagle Mountain.
Just before noon, Engstrom's neighbors had called police to report a woman was screaming at the Cherry Hill Tower apartments, at 1675 S. 400 East in Orem. The neighbors said they also heard what sounded like a fire alarm, but when officers arrived they heard nothing from the apartment.
Two hours later, investigators learned that Driscoll had called a family member and said he had "done something horrible," the warrant states. Driscoll reportedly told the relative he had fought with Engstrom earlier in the day, "and in 'self-defense,' David said he shot Brittany several times in the back, killing her," investigators wrote.
Driscoll said he collected the brass casings from the room and left. Officers returned to the apartment and found Brittany's body inside.
Officers later found Driscoll in a car in northwest Utah County, where Utah County sheriff's deputies tried to speak with him until sunset, when Driscoll fatally shot himself.
Driscoll, 37, of Eagle Mountain, had been charged in September with four counts of first-degree felony aggravated sexual abuse of a child, each count carrying a penalty of 15 years to life in prison.
However, prosecutors said Driscoll was not deemed a danger to the community and he was allowed to be free without posting bail, although he was prohibited from contacting the two alleged sex abuse victims.
Driscoll was due in court the day after the shooting for a preliminary hearing in the sexual abuse case, a hearing during which prosecutors present evidence and a judge decides whether there is probable cause for the case to move forward to trial.
Although Engstrom was considered a "circumstantial witness," whom prosecutors intended to call if the case went to trial, she was not scheduled to speak at the hearing and her testimony was not considered crucial, prosecutors have said.
Investigators prepared the search warrant to review Engstrom's phone and social media for evidence of contact between herself and Driscoll, the affidavit states.
The documents released Tuesday do not describe the contents of those communications.