Man steps off bus, arrested for auto theft, drugs, harboring a runaway

ST. GEORGE — Shortly after stepping off a Greyhound bus in St. George Tuesday morning, a LaVerkin man was arrested for multiple, statewide warrants relating to harboring a runaway and felony charges.

After Richard Charles Smith III, 19, allegedly stole a Toyota pickup truck and trailer someone had left the keys in, he fled to Arizona with a 16-year-old young woman. The juvenile had been listed as a runaway prior to the incident LaVerkin Police Chief Benjamin Lee said.

“He knew she was a runaway,” Lee said. “He has a habitual issue for these kinds of offenses.”

Arizona Department of Public Safety discovered the pickup truck with an empty tank of gas. It appeared Smith had driven the truck until it ran out of gas and then abandoned the vehicle. Smith and the juvenile were apprehended in Arizona. Smith was released and traveled back home to St. George on a Greyhound Bus, he said

St. George police received a call from LaVerkin police pertaining to a suspicion that Smith might be on the bus. Officers confirmed the suspicion and approached Smith at the Greyhound bus station, located in the McDonald’s parking lot near Main Street and Bluff Street, St. George Police Sgt. Sam Despain said.

The LaVerkin Police Chief, assisted by St. George Police Officer Jud Callaway, arrested Smith and he was booked into Washington County’s Purgatory Correctional Facility.

Smith was charged with a third-degree felony for theft of an automobile; a second-degree felony for possession of a stolen vehicle; a third-degree felony for possession of methamphetamine; and a class-B misdemeanor for possession of drug paraphernalia. Smith was also charged with five class-B misdemeanors and two class-C misdemeanors for warrants relating to contributing to the delinquency of a minor and harboring a runaway.

According to Washington County Booking information Smith’s total bail stands at $24,678.

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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5 Comments

  • Patti May 21, 2014 at 9:32 pm

    Habitual? He’s 19 she’s 16… Most likely consensual. Gosh these reporter’s..

  • Mark May 22, 2014 at 8:53 am

    Wow, I guess tge the greyhound isn’t fast enough for these criminals, second time is the last two weeks.

  • Jon R. Cocktoasten May 22, 2014 at 9:42 am

    Yeah cuz he probably NEVER committed a crime as a juvenile… Get a life and leave the reporters alone!!! Oh unless you can do better!!! I’m sure if your daughter “consented” to this, you’d be just fine huh? Peace!

  • Ex-Mormon May 25, 2014 at 2:42 pm

    What is “possession of a felony”?

    • Joyce Kuzmanic Joyce Kuzmanic May 26, 2014 at 7:02 am

      Possession of a stolen vehicle, Ex-M – Thank you for catching that, addition made.
      ST. GEORGE NEWS | STGnews.com
      Joyce Kuzmanic
      Editor in Chief

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