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Man Awaiting Extradition to Michigan Faces New Charges

Booking photo for Jeremy Heath provided by the Campbell County Detention Center.

Jeremy Heath booking photo taken Aug. 1, 2019 provided by the Campbell County Detention Center.

A fight that broke out between two inmates in a holding cell at the Campbell County Courthouse last Friday afternoon has resulted in additional charges for one of the men involved.

According to the affidavit of probable cause, the altercation between 43-year-old Jeremy Heath and 29-year-old Joseph Cruzen was reported to dispatch around 1:30 p.m. Oct. 18. Both men were restrained by handcuffs and belly chains while awaiting their respective hearings at the courthouse.

Heath allegedly told deputies that the fight began when Cruzen was being evasive about the charges he was facing and boasted about having sexually assaulted an adult female. Court documents state that Heath told officers he blacked out and did not know what happened after that.

Cruzen told deputies that the two men were talking about their charges when he began to walk around the cell and saw Heath slip his belly chain down around his feet to the front, allowing Heath to swing the chain. When he turned his back, Cruzen told deputies that Heath hit him in the back of the head with the belly chain. Cruzen curled up, pulling his hands up for protection, while still in restraints. Heath then allegedly put his own belly chain over Cruzen’s head and around his neck.

Cruzen said he was able to stop the chain from choking him with his hands while calling for help.

He reported that during the altercation, Heath struck him in the left side of the face multiple times with his knee.

Deputies took pictures of Cruzen’s injuries, which included two small cut marks to the back of his head, swelling near his left eye, as well as red marks on his neck.

According to court documents, Heath asked deputies to charge him, stating he did not want to return to Michigan since his family is in Gillette.

Heath was arrested Aug. 1, after the Gillette Police Department was alerted to his whereabouts and a Michigan warrant by a state fraud investigator.

Heath is currently being held on a Governor’s warrant out of Michigan for the original charges of murder, fleeing, and being a habitual criminal, according to the affidavit.

Cruzen is currently incarcerated, facing multiple charges including attempted second-degree murder following a domestic violence incident Oct. 3 where he allegedly stabbed his ex-wife in the neck.