SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4) – A man who pleaded guilty to manslaughter in 2007 after reportedly killing his mother two years prior is now facing a new charge of burglary after police say he followed two girls into Highland High School on Nov. 17 and shared with a school administrator that “he was there to hurt kids.”
According to court documents, Matthew Kirkham, 51, was initially charged with first-degree felony manslaughter for killing his mother in 2005. However, the charge was amended to second-degree felony manslaughter after he pleaded guilty by reason of mental illness in 2007. Kirkham was sentenced to one to 15 years in Utah State Prison in July of 2007 and was ordered to receive treatment at the Utah State Mental Hospital for 18 months. Kirkham’s prison sentence was eventually suspended in 2008 and he was placed on probation for five years. He was sent back to Utah State Prison in 2009 after receiving additional charges while living at the Utah State Mental Hospital, and was released on parole thereafter.
Roughly 13 years after his last crime, the Salt Lake City Police Department (SLCPD) says that Kirkham was reported on Thursday when he allegedly followed two female students into Highland High School at 7:30 a.m. According to police records, Kirkham followed one of the students until she found a school administrator.
SLCPD reports that the administrator confronted Kirkham and escorted him out of the school. The agency notes that “as they were walking [Kirkham] stated he was there to hurt kids.”
Kirkham has since been booked into the Salt Lake County Jail on the third-degree felony charge of burglary.