Police: Mother knowingly leaves daughter with drug users, charged with child endangerment

Stock image | St. George News

WASHINGTON COUNTY — An investigation into the use of stolen credit cards led to the arrest of a LaVerkin man and woman Wednesday on a variety of criminal charges, including child endangerment after the woman left her daughter with two men who were suspected of using drugs at the time. The woman allegedly told her daughter not to answer if police came to the door.

While investigating a LaVerkin vehicle burglary in which multiple credit cards, gift cards and identifying documents were stolen, authorities learned one of the cards had recently been used at the Davis Farmer’s Market in LaVerkin, according to a probable cause statement filed by the Washington County Sheriff’s Office in support of the arrests.

Jesse McBride Farr, of LaVerkin, Utah, booking photo posted May 18, 2016 | Photo courtesy of the Washington County Sheriff’s Office, St. George News
Jesse McBride Farr, of LaVerkin, Utah, booking photo posted May 18, 2016 | Photo courtesy of the Washington County Sheriff’s Office, St. George News

The unauthorized charge was made at 9:06 a.m. in the amount of $46.97, the arresting deputy wrote in a sworn statement. After reviewing the grocery store’s surveillance footage, the individual who made the purchase was identified as 35-year-old Jesse McBride Farr.

A $60 cash withdrawal was also made at an ATM outside the food mart with another one of the stolen credit cards, the report stated.

Additionally, a Discover Card representative reported a female had called the company’s customer service attempting to obtain a cash advance, according to the statement. The phone number utilized to call Discover Card was traced back to 40-year-old Maura Farr McGraw, who was identified as Farr’s sister.

Authorities obtained a search warrant for the LaVerkin home which Farr and McGraw share, according to the statement. Farr and McGraw were both detained when the search warrant was executed.

McGraw allegedly admitted to having called the Discover Card company to “change the PIN number and try to obtain a cash advance,” the report stated. McGraw, who was on supervised probation at the time of the incident, told deputies she had received the stolen card from Farr.

“While searching the home for the financial and identifying documents, drug paraphernalia with drug residue was located in areas easily accessible and frequented by Maura’s two children,” the deputy wrote in the statement.

Maura Farr McGraw, of LaVerkin, Utah, booking photo posted May 18, 2016 | Photo courtesy of the Washington County Sheriff’s Office, St. George News
Maura Farr McGraw, of LaVerkin, Utah, booking photo posted May 18, 2016 | Photo courtesy of the Washington County Sheriff’s Office, St. George News

Children’s toys were located among syringes and other drug paraphernalia, according to the statement. When questioned about the drug items, Farr told authorities they were his.

“While I was interviewing Jesse, he was very lethargic, slow to respond, had slurred speech and was nodding off,” the officer stated. “I recognized these symptoms as someone who is under the influence of heroin.”

In reviewing McGraw’s text history on her cellphone, deputies noted a text conversation McGraw had with her daughter in which she told her daughter “not to answer the door for the police,” according to the report.

“In her interview,” the deputy stated, “Maura stated she had left her daughter home with Jesse who she believed was using drugs along with another male subject.”

Both Farr and McGraw were arrested and transported to the Washington County Purgatory Correctional Facility.

The Washington County Attorney’s Office filed an information in 5th District Court accusing Farr of third-degree felony endangerment of a child and unlawful acquisition of a finance card; class A misdemeanor possession of a controlled substance; and three class B misdemeanor counts of possession of drug paraphernalia and unlawful use of a finance card.

McGraw was charged with two third-degree felony counts of endangerment of a child and unlawful acquisition of a finance card.

Both Farr and McGraw were found indigent by the 5th District Court during their initial court appearance Thursday. According to court documents, Farr will be represented by court-appointed attorney Douglas Terry, and McGraw 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, 2016, all rights reserved.

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