A former Mammoth resident and the son of Mammoth Dog Teams’ Jim Ouimet was charged Wednesday with two counts of murder with a deadly weapon in a double homicide in Sparks, Nev. following the stabbing deaths of the young son of his estranged wife and his wife’s mother on Sept. 17.
Justin Ouimet, 24, was originally arrested by Sparks Police officers in the community of Hidden Valley on Saturday, Sept. 18, on charges of attempted burglary and traffic charges, after an investigation pointed to him as a possible suspect.
Some hours later he was arrested on charges that he fatally stabbed two-year-old Connor Lawrence and 62-year-old Lana Stone. Afterwards, he confessed to the murders, according to Sparks police.
Ouimet’s estranged wife, Danielle Lawrence, had left the child in the care of her mother that Friday at her home in Sparks. She returned to the scene of the murders, A toy had been set on fire in the living room of the house and Ouimet later told police he had set the fire and left it burning on a chair so it would burn down the house.
Ouimet was taken into custody after a witness notified police that a man with a knife had tried to break into the home of Lana Stone some miles away, a call that came “shortly after the stabbing call,” according to a Sparks police press release. Stone’s husband, Roger Stone, was not home at the time.
The witness was able to get Ouimet’s license plate number and police found him a “short time later.”
According to a Sept. 20 Reno Gazette Journal article, Ouimet told police during his confession that he had gone to Danielle Lawrence’s home to murder “whoever was there.”
There were no drugs or alcohol involved in the incident, according to Sparks Detective Steve Fiore, who spoke to the Mammoth Times on Monday.
Ouimet and Lawrence were in the middle of a divorce, according to the police report. Ouimet had previously been jailed in Nevada on “suspicion of domestic battery against Lawrence” in 2008, the Gazette Journal article states.
He had a felony record in Mono County, after being convicted of auto theft in 2005. His juvenile records are sealed, according to county officials.
Jim Ouimet confirmed to the Times on Monday that Justin is his son.
Ouimet said Justin had attended school in Mammoth for “several years,” and lived with Ouimet during this time, before he moved out of town.
“It’s been a rough couple of weeks,” said Jim Ouimet, who said he lost his best friend from the Marines to a suicide two weeks ago.
Ouimet declined to comment further.
Justin Ouimet remains in the Washoe County Jail without bail, according to a Sept. 22 Reno Gazette Journal. A preliminary hearing has not been set.