Joey Lee Ray


Support Local Journalism

An Idaho Falls man is in jail after he reportedly threatened his roommate with a claw hammer.

According to the probable cause affidavit, Joey Lee Ray, 57, threatened the victim on June 27 after the two argued about a suspected incident of child sex abuse by a third man. Ray wanted to beat the man he believed was behind the abuse. The victim attempted to dissuade him.

The affidavit states Ray left the room and returned with a hammer. The victim told an Idaho Falls Police Department officer Ray lifted the hammer above his head and walked toward the victim, threatening to hit him. The victim said he responded by threatening to hurt Ray. He said Ray stopped, put the hammer down, and left the room.

Ray later reportedly said he was going to beat the man he suspected of child sex abuse to death with the hammer. The victim said he hid the hammer to stop Ray. He called the police, believing Ray could hurt someone.

Ray admitted to police that he had threatened his roommate with the hammer, but said he only intended to scare him.

Ray was charged with aggravated assault, punishable with up to five years in prison. His bond was set at $10,000 and a no-contact order was issued between him and the victim.

A preliminary hearing is scheduled for 1:30 p.m. Friday in the Bonneville County Courthouse.