Couple charged with 13 felonies after burglarizing home with woman inside

ST. GEORGE – A St. George man and his girlfriend are facing a lengthy list of serious charges Saturday after allegedly burglarizing a home while a resident was inside, and knowingly being in possession of 18 finance cards that did not belong to them.

Officers responded to a residential burglary in the area of 300 North 2000 East in St. George where woman reported that her purse went missing from her kitchen table around 4:30 p.m., and that she was home at the time, according to probable cause statements written by St. George Police Officer Lionel Gracia in support of the arrests.

Bryce McDonald Smyer, of St. George, Utah, booking photo posted June 25, 2015 | Photo courtesy of the Washington County Sheriff’s Office, St. George News
Bryce McDonald Smyer, of St. George, Utah, booking photo posted June 25, 2015 | Photo courtesy of the Washington County Sheriff’s Office, St. George News

The woman’s neighbor told her that she saw a man and woman, who also lived in the neighborhood, near the woman’s home around that time, the statement said.

The neighbor reportedly saw the woman, identified as 26-year-old Dacota Dawn Dacus, stand in front of the home while the man, identified as 27-year-old Bryce McDonald Smyer, walked to the side of the home and disappeared behind a fence, according to the statement. Smyer and Dacus were then seen walking toward their home with an unknown object in Smyer’s possession.

Officers went to the couples’ home, the statement said, where Dacus opened the door and agreed to talk to them. Inside the home, officers spotted a purse matching the description of the one reported stolen. They inquired about the purse and other property on the kitchen table.

Dacus gave the officers permission to look through the property, and they discovered the purse, along with 11 finance cards, belonged to the woman who had reported the purse stolen. Dacus told police it belonged to her friend but could not give her friend’s name, Gracia wrote in the statement.

Another wallet and other property, including 7 finance cards, were also in the home and discovered to have been stolen from another woman, according to the statement of probable cause. Police also noticed a glass marijuana pipe and a fixed blade knife.

“(Dacus) denied having anything to do with the burglary but she could not say where she got the property,” Gracia wrote in the statement. “She gave me permission to search her wallet. It contained several cards that belonged to (her neighbor). (Dacus) stated that she must have ‘accidentally’ put them into her wallet, although there were cards in different locations of her wallet.”

Dacota Dawn Dacus, of St. George, Utah, booking photo posted June 25, 2015 | Photo courtesy of the Washington County Sheriff’s Office, St. George News
Dacota Dawn Dacus, of St. George, Utah, booking photo posted June 25, 2015 | Photo courtesy of the Washington County Sheriff’s Office, St. George News

Smyer arrived home and was detained and questioned by police. Smyer initially told police that he was nowhere near the home in question.

“He stated that someone just left the purse in his home,” Gracia wrote. “He then stated that it was left in front of his home. He then stated that he found the purse near a van about 4 houses away and he was being a ‘good Samaritan’ by trying to locate the owner. The property taken was clearly gone through. There was no indication that they were trying to return it.”

Smyer and Dacus were arrested and booked into the Washington County Purgatory Correctional Facility.

Smyer was charged with a second-degree felony for burglary of a dwelling, six third-degree felonies for unlawful acquisition of a finance card, a class A misdemeanor for unlawful possession of a dangerous weapon, and class B misdemeanors for theft by receiving stolen property, and possession of drugs and drug paraphernalia.

Dacus was charged with six third-degree felonies for unlawful acquisition of a finance card, two class A misdemeanors for unlawful possession of a dangerous weapon and drugs, and three class B misdemeanors for theft by receiving stolen property and possession of drug paraphernalia.

Judge Jeffrey Wilcox, of the 5th District Court, ordered both Smyer’s and Dacus’ bail for their release pending trial set at $30,000 each during each of their initial court appearances Monday.

The two were both found indigent by the court and Smyer will be represented by court-appointed attorney Aric Cramer, while Dacus will be represented by court-appointed attorney Douglas Terry.

They are both scheduled to make their next court appearance July 6.

Persons arrested or charged are presumed innocent until found guilty in a court of law or as otherwise decided by a trier-of-fact.

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Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2015, all rights reserved.

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4 Comments

  • Mean Momma June 30, 2015 at 10:11 am

    Total IDIOTS! Great neighbors too…

  • sagemoon June 30, 2015 at 12:22 pm

    Scum bag thieves.

  • knobe June 30, 2015 at 12:46 pm

    Alas , I learned years ago to lock my door even when home because I had neighbor kids who would knock then enter if you didn’t come to the door .
    They had learned this behavior from daddy who was a career burglar .

    Nothing like coming out of the bathroom to find neighbor kids IN your home .
    Made me change my ways .

  • CaliGirl June 30, 2015 at 4:55 pm

    Maybe they should try good ol’fashion “get a job!” Idiots! I bet mommy or daddy will bail them out.

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