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Father of Dead Boy Takes Lie Test

November 7, 2000

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) _ The father of a 2-year-old boy who froze to death in a Utah forest passed a lie-detector test in which he denied intentionally leaving the toddler to die, investigators said.

Paul Wayment left his son, Gage, alone in his pickup Oct. 26 while he scouted a private hunting area in northeastern Utah. When Wayment returned to his truck 40 minutes to an hour later, his son had vanished, he said.

After four days of unsuccessful searches, James Wilkes, a volunteer rescuer, found Gage’s body on Oct. 31 under 2 to 4 inches of snow. Wilkes said he carried the body for at least two hours before becoming exhausted and leaving it behind. The body was recovered the next day.

During the polygraph, Wayment denied doing anything to cause the death of the boy and having any association with Wilkes. The test indicated Wayment was truthful, Summit County Sheriff’s Lt. Joe Offret said.

Officers were expected to forward the results of their investigation to the Summit County attorney’s office, and prosecutors will decide whether any charges will be filed.

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