ST. GEORGE – The report of a business burglary and a subsequent attempt to flee from police Monday resulted in the arrest of a St. George man for multiple criminal offenses.
Just before 9 p.m., St. George Police responded to the report of a possible business burglary in the area of 200 West St. George Boulevard. The person making the call reported that someone had been “snooping around” and heard glass break, according to a probable cause statement.
When a police officer arrived in the area through a parking lot at 70 East St. George Boulevard, he saw a man dressed in dark clothing putting a white trash bag into the back seat of a gold-colored car he soon identified as a Chrysler 300. The man appeared to look the officer’s way and noticed the police car entering the parking lot.
Without closing the door to the back seat, the man got in the car and drove it toward the police cruiser. The officer activated his emergency lights and attempted to block the way out of the parking lot with his vehicle. However, the man in the Chrysler swerved around the police cruiser and escaped.
The officer was able to get a good look at the man in the car as he passed and left the parking lot to look for the Chrysler. After initially losing sight of the car, the officer found it again in a parking lot by the Main Street Plaza parking structure.
“I watched as the vehicle crashed into what appeared to be the side of the parking structure and heard the sound of the collision,” the officer wrote in the probable cause statement.
The driver then parked the vehicle in a nearby stall and walked away. When the officer drove over to the Chrysler he saw indications it had “crashed into a large curb.”
Other police officers about two blocks from 200 East St. George Boulevard apprehended the man who had been driving the Chrysler and identified him as 32-year-old Kellen Jordan Kerbs.
According to the probable cause statement, after the officer made Kerbs aware of his Miranda rights, Kerbs stated he understood and said, “I f—– up, I’m stupid.”
When asked to tell police what had happened, Kerbs said he had seen the police car entering the park lot and decided to run for it. Prior to that, he told police he had recently been fired from his job at a salon, which happened to be the same business he had decided to break into that evening.
He also admitted to using a hammer to break into the salon so he could steal some of the merchandise inside, according to the probable cause statement.
The officer interviewing Kerbs noticed his speech was slurred and that his breath smelled of alcohol. When asked about it, Kerbs said he has imbibed in some alcoholic beverages prior to the burglary.
Kerbs agreed to take part in field sobriety tests administered by the officer that resulted in multiple indicators that he was impaired. According to a breath test, Kerbs’ blood-alcohol rating was .104.
Kebrs was booked to the Washington County Purgatory Correctional Facility and charged with felony offenses related to theft, burglary, criminal mischief and failure to stop at an officer’s command. He also faces misdemeanor offenses related to DUI, driving a vehicle with a suspended license, failure to remain at the scene of a crash and possessing burglary tools.
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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