Off-duty UHP troopers assist officers after SUV crashes through median

A man allegedly became combative with police after driving through the median just before the intersection of St. George Boulevard and 700 East, St. George, Utah, Sept. 18, 2016 | Photo by Joseph Witham, St. George News

ST. GEORGE — Interagency cooperation shined Sunday evening when off-duty Utah Highway Patrol troopers assisted an officer apprehend a man after he barreled through a St. George Boulevard median and became combative with responding law enforcement.

A man allegedly became combative with police after driving through the median just before the intersection of St. George Blvd. and 700 East, St. George, Utah, Sept. 18, 2016 | Photo by Joseph Witham, St. George News
A man allegedly became combative with police after driving through the median just before the intersection of St. George Boulevard and 700 East, St. George, Utah, Sept. 18, 2016 | Photo by Joseph Witham, St. George News

At approximately 9:40 p.m. Sunday, a man driving west on St. George Boulevard ran his white Hyundai Santa Fe onto the median just before the intersection of 700 East and St. George Boulevard and crashed into two light poles, causing extensive damage to city property and the vehicle.

A St. George police officer who was driving east on St. George Boulevard saw the SUV crash through the center median, striking several bushes and a light pole before coming to rest at the base of a second light pole, St. George Police Sgt. Spencer Holmes said.

The officer positioned his patrol car in front of the crash. He left his patrol car to assess the situation and found a disoriented male driver, approximately 25 years old, who became combative with the officer, Holmes said.

A man allegedly became combative with police after driving through the median just before the intersection of St. George Blvd. and 700 East, St. George, Utah, Sept. 18, 2016 | Photo by Joseph Witham, St. George News
A man allegedly became combative with police after driving through the median just before the intersection of St. George Boulevard and 700 East, St. George, Utah, Sept. 18, 2016 | Photo by Joseph Witham, St. George News

Several off-duty Utah Highway Patrol troopers who were in the area responded initially to assist with the situation. The suspect was yelling and swearing at the responding officers.

“We have a couple officers that were banged up a little bit during the scuffle with the male,” Holmes said.

The suspect did not complain of injuries, but he and the injured officers received medical assessment. The suspect was transported in a Gold Cross ambulance to Dixie Regional Medical Center for medical observation, Holmes said.

The man was exhibiting signs of intoxication or drug-induced psychosis, Holmes said, adding that they were considering DUI as the cause of the crash.

“The odor of marijuana was present,” he said. “In the course of our investigation for DUI, the approximately 25-year-old suspect resisted our arrest and attempted to flee the scene. We had to use force to apprehend him.”

No other vehicles were involved, and the inoperable SUV was towed away.

A light pole was removed after a car drove through the median just before the intersection of St. George Blvd. and 700 East, St. George, Utah, Sept. 18, 2016 | Photo by Joseph Witham, St. George News
A light pole was removed after an SUV drove through the median just before the intersection of St. George Boulevard and 700 East, St. George, Utah, Sept. 18, 2016 | Photo by Joseph Witham, St. George News

Debris was strewn across the road as a result of the incident. The first light pole struck by the vehicle was so badly damaged it had to be removed from the median with assistance from St. George Power and city street crews.

Holmes said he was grateful for the assistance from the UHP troopers and that he appreciates the spirit of cooperation of law enforcement agencies in the area.

Five units from the St. George Police Department also responded to the scene, along with an engine from the St. George Fire Department.

This report is based on preliminary information provided by law enforcement or other emergency responders and may not contain the full scope of findings.

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

Click on photo to enlarge it, then use your left-right arrow keys to cycle through the gallery.

Email: jwitham@stgnews.com

Twitter: @STGnews

Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2016, all rights reserved.

Free News Delivery by Email

Would you like to have the day's news stories delivered right to your inbox every evening? Enter your email below to start!

Leave a Reply