Car consumed by flames, explosions; couple spotted running away from scene

ST. GEORGE — A car exploded with raging flames and sparks in St. George Thursday after a group of bystanders watched two people running away from the scene.

Debris flies in the air as a car bursts into flames on Barcelona Drive in St. George, Utah, Oct. 25 | Photo by Spencer Ricks, St. George News

The car burst into flames on Barcelona Drive near the intersection of Hidden Valley Drive at about 6:50 p.m. The smell of burning rubber filled the air as black smoke billowed from the vehicle. As the fire was raging, the sound of the car horn was blaring. Small explosions sent debris flying as the St. George Fire Department arrived on the scene.

“There were multiple 911 calls that there were explosions and smoke and flames,” battalion chief Robert Hooper said. “We had the fire out in about five minutes with one engine.”

No injuries were reported and no surrounding homes were affected by the fire, Hooper said. The cause to the fire is not known to responders at this point, he said.

The occupants of the vehicle ran away from the scene and were apprehended by officers from the St. George Police Department about one block away from the fire on Hidden Valley Drive.

A group of youths riding their bikes around the scene at the time told St. George News they saw a man and a woman running away from the car after putting a gas canister inside the cab of the vehicle.

One of the occupants of the car is arrested by the St. George Police Department after the vehicle was consumed by flames in St. George, Utah, Oct. 25 | Photo by Spencer Ricks, St. George News

“I saw them putting the gas can in the car and then they walked out and they were smoking (marijuana),” one of the seventh-grade boys said. “We knew it was weed because I could smell it. I know what weed smells like and it was really strong.”

As the fire was starting, the boy said the couple grabbed several bags from the trunk of their car before they started “booking it” down the street. He said he rode up to them on his bike before they told him to “f— off.”

Cameron Woolley was on her way home when she saw the fire starting in the car as well. She said she saw the fire starting in the trunk of the vehicle and she also saw the gas canister above the center console in the car.

St. George Police Officers weren’t available to comment on what caused the fire, why the occupants ran away and why they were arrested. This is a developing story.

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Email: sricks@stgnews.com

Twitter:  @STGnews | @SpencerRicks

Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2018, all rights reserved.

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11 Comments

  • Carpe Diem October 26, 2018 at 7:47 am

    There’s gotta be a couple felonies here. PLEASE
    First, stolen car… Arson… for starters. Who are these jokers and from which State did they crawl out from?

    • Carpe Diem October 26, 2018 at 7:52 am

      Apparently so… Those plates looked like MO:

      DUNCAN, SAMUEL L
      City/State: UNION / MO
      PCF Number: 639268

      Arrest Date: 23:46:05 10/25/18
      Agency: St George Police Department
      IN CUSTODY

      STOLEN VEHICLE-POSSESS OR RECEIVE
      ARSON-$1500-$5000
      CRIMINAL MISCHIEF-$1500-$5000
      FALSE INFO-PERSONAL TO POLICE
      PARAPHERNALIA-POSSESS BM

      —-

      SMITH, JENNIFER L
      City/State: Union / MO
      PCF Number: 639271

      Arrest Date: 00:07:35 10/26/18
      Agency: St George Police Department
      IN CUSTODY

      STOLEN VEHICLE-POSSESS OR RECEIVE
      PARAPHERNALIA-POSSESS BM

      • Real Life October 26, 2018 at 9:37 am

        Little St. Geezy ain’t so little anymore.

        • KR567 October 26, 2018 at 11:18 am

          It’s a sign of the times coming up. and the writing is on the wall. party up folks ! no more yesterdays

          • Canaanite October 26, 2018 at 9:53 pm

            Hopefully just lowlife passing through (on the way to California), maybe the car broke down and they thought the fire wouldn’t attract attention as they destroyed the “evidence”.

  • LunchboxHero October 26, 2018 at 7:57 am

    OMG, telling a kid to F- off?! I’m glad your car burned up, you big jerk!

    • Carpe Diem October 26, 2018 at 9:01 am

      Well, apparently it wasn’t theirs… But why did they choose to burn it near homes and people while smoking weed… Just kinda surprised they didn’t try to escape by running into a lava tube with glow sticks while handcuffed… geez people, maybe reefer madness is a true thing… /s

      • Paul Dail Paul Dail October 26, 2018 at 10:15 am

        Every now and then, a comment comes through that incites a good chuckle from the editorial board. We don’t often acknowledge them, but hey, it’s Friday. And this was funny on many levels.

        Thanks for being an (obviously) active part of St. George News.

        Paul Dail
        Editor in chief

        • Kilroywashere October 26, 2018 at 12:49 pm

          Carpr Diem, you have been knighted.

          • Carpe Diem October 26, 2018 at 2:19 pm

            Whoo hoo! TYVM Ladies and Gents

  • DB October 27, 2018 at 3:13 pm

    That seventh grader is more advanced than I was at his age. I didn’t know what weed smelled like until I got to college.

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