Suspect ‘ashamed’ after trying to kill man with forklift in western Arizona

Erwin Colato, 36, of California City, CA is accused of attempting to kill another man by...
Erwin Colato, 36, of California City, CA is accused of attempting to kill another man by pinning him under a forklift.(Courtesy: Mohave County Sheriff's Office)
Published: Jul. 22, 2022 at 12:40 PM MST
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MOHAVE VALLEY, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) — A man is in critical condition after he was pinned underneath a forklift weighing thousands of pounds in far western Arizona. He was only found, because the suspect who allegedly put him there brought deputies to the scene of the crime.

It happened Thursday night in Mohave Valley. According to the Mohave County Sheriff’s Office, deputies met with a man at a business on Highway 95 shortly after 10 p.m. He reportedly looked distressed, then told deputies that he had done something wrong, and that he was ashamed of it.

He explained to deputies that he had lowered a forklift onto a man and that he wasn’t sure if he was dead. He then agreed to take deputies to a home on A Street, where they found a man pinned under a forklift. Emergency crews pulled the machinery off of him, and he was flown to a Las Vegas hospital where, as of Friday morning, he’s listed in critical but stable condition.

The suspect, since identified as 36-year-old Erwin Colato of California City, Calif., told detectives he first attacked the man in a travel trailer inside the home’s garage. Then he allegedly dragged the man onto the garage floor and lowered the 32,000 forklift on top of him. He reportedly told detectives his plan was to kill the other man.

Colato was booked into jail where he’s facing one count of felony Attempted Homicide. The victim’s identity has not been released.