4 officers draw guns on man with knife at Harmon’s

ST. GEORGE – Four police officers drew their weapons on a St. George man last week who pulled a knife at a grocery store after he was escorted from the store when he refused to leave on his own.

Officers responded to Harmon’s Neighborhood Grocer located at 1189 E. 700 South in St. George on report of a suspicious person, according to probable cause statement filed by the St. George Police Department in support of the arrest.

Braedan Aaric Smith, of St. George, Utah, booking photo posted Dec. 16, 2015 | Photo courtesy of the Washington County Sheriff’s Office, St. George News
Braedan Aaric Smith, of St. George, Utah, booking photo posted Dec. 16, 2015 | Photo courtesy of the Washington County Sheriff’s Office, St. George News

When officers arrived, they spoke with 22-year-old Braedan Aaric Smith who store security had requested leave the store or be liable for trespass.

When Smith was asked to leave the store, he refused, the statement read. Instead, he turned and walked away from officers, prompting them to grab Smith’s arms and escort him out of the store.

Once outside, Smith took a couple of steps from the officers and then reached into his front right pocket, according to the statement. Then, one police officer yelled: “Drop the weapon!”

“I saw Braedan’s right hand as it was coming out of his pocket and I saw a silver knife in his right hand,” the arresting officer wrote in the statement. “I could hear and see as Braedan opened the knife. Braedan held the knife down to his right side and began to turn to his right side toward (the officers).”

At this point, the report stated, four police officers had their weapons drawn on Smith, ordering him: “Drop your weapon!”

“When Braedan turned around,” the officer wrote in his statement, “he stepped towards officers with the weapon in his hands and he was within proximity that he could have assaulted the officers with the weapon and caused death or serious harm. Braedan only complied after being told multiple times to drop the weapon and he saw 4 firearms pointed at him.”

Smith finally complied by dropping the knife and getting on the ground. He was arrested and transported to the Washington County Purgatory Correctional Facility where he was questioned about the incident.

“Braedan admitted he removed the knife from his pocket but he insisted the knife was already open before he pulled it out,” the officer wrote. “Braedan was asked why he pulled the knife out (and) he stated he just wanted to hold the things in his front pocket and the knife was the only thing in his front pocket.”

Smith was booked into the correctional facility on charges of second-degree felony assault against a police officer, along with class A misdemeanor threat or use of a dangerous weapon in a fight.

Judge Jeffrey Wilcox, of the 5th District Court, ordered $10,000 bail for Smith’s release pending trial.

He was found indigent by the court during his initial court appearance Thursday and will be represented by court-appointed attorney Michael Lastowski.

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

Email: kscott@stgnews.com

Twitter: @STGnews

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

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23 Comments

  • Marty December 22, 2015 at 12:20 pm

    That guy came within an inch of his life, wonder if he was trying to do a suicide by cops. Have to give ST George police credit for using restraint!

  • DB December 22, 2015 at 2:15 pm

    Harmons? Maybe he thought he was at WalMart 🙂

  • ladybugavenger December 22, 2015 at 2:23 pm

    males pulling knife out at grocery store lives matter.

    • Terry December 22, 2015 at 10:39 pm

      Hey, thats a SEXEST COMMENT. Really Males?? JEEEZZZ

      • ladybugavenger December 23, 2015 at 10:12 pm

        I’ll Politically correct I sexiest it for you….all people pulling knife out at grocery store lives matter. I suppose I could have said white lives with knives matter

    • .... December 23, 2015 at 2:39 pm

      go go Gadget Janet Reno face mask. ! ..see it was a male LOL !

  • smith86 December 22, 2015 at 3:03 pm

    This is my little brother he has a good heart he really does and No he didnt think he was at walmart and not trying to do suicide by cops im very thankful they used restraint he has a mental disorder . He said he never pulled a knife they thought and assumed it was a knife, but as it says he has a lawyer.

    • ladybugavenger December 22, 2015 at 3:57 pm

      What kind of mental disorder…. Psychopath? Sociopath? Angry at the world disorder? Been screwed over my entire life and I am going to take it out on everyone else disorder?

      • Terry December 22, 2015 at 10:41 pm

        HE lied, holding onto a knife because He likes to Hold Thing? WUT? JEEEEZZZZZ

    • Randys Sister December 23, 2015 at 9:04 am

      Smith don’t pay attention to any of the comments on pages like this, people are trolls and they are fearlessly ignorant behind their keyboards. I hope your brother can get help and fix whatever is wrong in his life or his mind and that this is just a bump in his life.

      • smith86 December 23, 2015 at 12:22 pm

        He has Schizophrenia and any of you wont understand unless you have dealt with a loved one who has this or dealing with it your self it is a very hard and sad mental disorder I just pray he can get and accept any help he can get have to admit his family has not been a good support group we all have just given him a place to sleep from time to time but non of us know how to deal with his mental disorder as well as himself the dr just puts him on meds that make him out of it and foggie so idk this disorder is not a win win without the resources and insurance to help him. What they say he did, he said he didnt so til its proven i take his story but still he is in jail and no excuse someone still could of been harmed

      • .... December 23, 2015 at 2:37 pm

        Wow you sound like a troll calling people trolls

        • 42214 December 23, 2015 at 7:25 pm

          How do we know he’s not as crazy as his brother?

          • .... December 24, 2015 at 4:39 pm

            How do we know he’s not as crazy as his sister eh ?

  • .... December 22, 2015 at 4:36 pm

    Well then I suggest you keep your mouth shut and stay off of social media . If I was his lawyer. I would tell you the same thing

  • Terry December 22, 2015 at 10:38 pm

    Any Other Place,, He would BE a Dead Man

  • Terry December 22, 2015 at 10:42 pm

    You Knife Man, Can thank ST Georges FINEST for not Pulling Four TRIGGERS

  • GrandmaB December 23, 2015 at 8:23 am

    I know this is going to piss people off and I really don’t care. This man is very lucky he was NOT brown or black. I’m sure there are plenty of cameras and witnesses to show if he had a knife. I’m glad the officer’s showed restraint. It is really too bad others don’t.

    • 42214 December 23, 2015 at 12:35 pm

      Very racist comment. I think police shoot white people just for fun too.

      • .... December 23, 2015 at 2:35 pm

        I do it all the time LOL !

    • mr.washington December 23, 2015 at 8:00 pm

      When crazy … happens in southern Utah such as this story. No one ever records anything don’t know why but even if they did they would all side with the police blindlessly … Mormons
      Ed. ellipses.

  • beentheredonethat December 23, 2015 at 9:22 pm

    P.t.s.d. pull the shank disorder.

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