UPDATED: LaVerkin shooting suspect nets 11 charges – 5 of them felonies

UPDATED 7:32 p.m. providing suspect information and incident details released by authorities on an officer-involved shooting that occurred in LaVerkin Wednesday evening.

Washington County Critical Incident Task Force Investigations Director Barry Golding issued a press release Thursday identifying the suspect involved in the pursuit and officer-involved shooting incident in LaVerkin Wednesday as Laithon D. Webb.

According to the press release, officers responding to a report of a trespass in progress learned that the suspect who had already left the scene was Webb, 21, of Hurricane. Webb was wanted on multiple outstanding arrest warrants and was possibly armed with a gun, the release states.

Laithon Dallas Webb, 21-year-old Hurricane man who fled from police and inititated an officer involved shooting nets 11 new charges in LaVerkin, Utah, July 6, 2016 |Photo courtesy of the Washington County Sheriff's Office, St. George News
Laithon Dallas Webb, 21 of Hurricane, faces 11 charges after running from police and allegedly trying to back two officers over with his car in LaVerkin, Utah, July 6, 2016 |Booking photo courtesy of the Washington County Sheriff’s Office, St. George News

Golding said officers then saw Webb driving a vehicle in Hurricane and tried to pull him over, but Webb sped off at a high rate of speed toward LaVerkin. Officers began pursuing Webb, but lost sight of the vehicle for a short time after it entered a LaVerkin neighborhood.

Officers later found the vehicle the man was driving parked near the rear of a residence. As officers approached the house Webb was seen running toward his vehicle, and despite numerous warnings by police to stop he quickly got in the car and started backing up, directly toward two officers standing behind the vehicle, Golding said.

Officers shouted several commands for Webb to stop the car and when he continued, one officer fired his handgun four times at the vehicle. Webb changed gears and began pulling the vehicle forward and the same officer fired another three rounds toward the car.

At that point the man stopped the vehicle, jumped out and began running. Officers pursued him on foot and were able to quickly take Webb into custody. Five of the officer’s rounds hit Webb’s vehicle. Webb was not hit by any of the shots.

Webb received minor injuries from a barbed-wire fence during the foot chase, but was otherwise unharmed.

The officer who fired his weapon was taken to the hospital to be treated for minor injuries related to the capture and arrest of the subject, and was later released in good condition.

Information on a second suspect who was in the vehicle when the incident began was obtained, however that suspect fled and is still at large at the time Golding issued a press release.

Webb was booked into Purgatory Correctional Facility Thursday on 11 charges that include two felony counts of aggravated assault with a weapon, two counts of auto theft, felony evading, and numerous misdemeanor charges.

Anyone with information regarding this case can call Barry Golding at 435-634-5723.

The initial story on this incident, published early Thursday morning, is below.

LAVERKIN — A man fleeing police refused to stop his vehicle at law enforcement commands Wednesday evening, instead driving straight at one of the police officers who fired his weapon at the suspect.

Male suspect was arrested after pursuit with officers where shots were fired in the area of E. 70 North and N. 60 East in La Verkin, Utah, July 6, 2016 | Photo by Cody Blowers, St. George News
A man was arrested after driving a vehicle at police officers. One officer fired his weapon at the car as it drove toward him in the 70 North block of 60 East in LaVerkin, Utah, July 6, 2016 | Photo by Cody Blowers, St. George News

The incident began at 6:53 p.m. when Hurricane Police officers responded to a trespassing call in progress and found the suspect had just left the scene in a vehicle, Hurricane Police Sgt. Brandon Buell said.

While investigating the trespassing incident officers also came upon what they believed to be a stolen vehicle at that location.

Meanwhile, officers located the man described in the trespassing incident at another location in Hurricane and when officers attempted to stop the vehicle the man was driving, he sped away, Buell said.

Officers began a pursuit, which continued into LaVerkin where they lost sight of the suspect for a time. When authorities spotted the man in his vehicle and approached him, the suspect drove directly at the pursuing officers with his vehicle.

Officers shouted multiple  commands at the man to stop the vehicle but he continued despite their warnings, Buell said, coming directly at the officers. One of the pursuing officers shot at the suspect as he continued driving directly at him.

Over one dozen investigators and officers respond to the area of 70 North and 60 East after shots were fired during pursuit in La Verkin, Utah, July 6, 2016 | Photo by Cody Blowers, St. George News
Over one dozen investigators and officers responded to 70 North block of 60 East after shots were fired during a pursuit with a suspect in LaVerkin, Utah, July 6, 2016 | Photo by Cody Blowers, St. George News

The suspect then stopped and jumped from the vehicle and fled on foot, with several officers close behind. When officers caught the man he became combative and started fighting, but was taken into custody.

The chase ended in the 70 North block of 60 East in LaVerkin, where an entire block was cordoned off. Over a dozen law enforcement officers and investigators responded from various agencies.

One witness at the scene reported hearing four shots fired, while another reported hearing three shots in quick succession.

Several St. George News readers also posted messages on the St. George News Facebook page, saying they heard shots fired and saw multiple law enforcement officers responding to a LaVerkin neighborhood.

One of the pursuing officers was injured during the foot chase and was transported to Dixie Regional Medical Center in St. George to be treated for minor scrapes and bruises. The suspect was also transported to the hospital as a precaution, where he was evaluated for minor cuts and bruises he received during the pursuit, Buell said.

Authorities received reports of a second suspect that fled on foot in LaVerkin during the time that officers lost sight of the vehicle there. That subject is being sought and is still at large at the time of this report.

The Washington County Critical Incident Task Force was called in to investigate the incident. One officer was placed on administrative leave pending an investigation, which is standard protocol in any officer-involved shooting, Buell said.

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

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

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

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