Man Who Fled During Trial Gets 28 Years For Attacking Camper

PRESCOTT, Ariz. (AP) — A 44-year-old Prescott man who fled in 2019 while on trial for a brutal attack on a camper the previous year has been sentenced to 28 years in prison after being apprehended in Payson in late July, authorities said.

Robert David Pearsall III was out on bond when he absconded two days before jurors in his Yavapai County Superior Court trial on attempted first-degree murder and aggravated assault charges returned guilty verdicts.

Judge Tina Ainley sentenced Pearsall on Wednesday.

The events leading to his conviction occurred in September 2018 when Pearsall struck the victim, whom he did not know, on the head multiple times with a large board in a remote camping area near Perkinsville, authorities said.

The severely injured victim likely would have died but for emergency aid provided by other campers who included trained firefighter paramedics, the county attorney's office said in a statement.

Pearsall fled the scene but surrendered days later. After absconding the next year while on trial, he was on the run for over two years before he was arrested July 22 in Payson where he was living under an alias, officials said.

Pearsall remains charged with failure to appear in the 2019 court proceedings and also likely faces additional charges because he had two guns and methamphetamine on him and assaulted the Payson police officer who had stopped him for a traffic violation, the office said.