Trial likely for man accused of dragging 15-year-old during iPhone theft

Composite image with background photo of 5th District Court in St. George, Utah, August 2019. Inset photos of Anthony Alamillo, 23, of St. George, booking photo taken in Washington County, Utah, Jul. 27, 2019 | Background photo by Cody Blowers; booking photo courtesy of Washington County Sheriff's Office, St. George News

ST. GEORGE — A local man accused of driving off during a robbery with a local teen still halfway inside the car appeared in court Tuesday for a preliminary hearing on a case that will likely be decided by a jury.

Anthony Alamillo, 23, of St. George, booking photo taken in Washington County, Utah, Jul. 27, 2019 | File photo courtesy of the Washington County Sheriff’s Office, St. George News

Anthony Alamillo, 23, appeared in 5th District Court for a preliminary hearing on a first-degree felony robbery charge. The defendant waived the preliminary hearing, at which point District Judge John J. Walton said the case is bound for trial.

Defense Attorney Caleb Cottam also waived the preliminary hearing that was scheduled on a related case during the same appearance, and told Judge Walton his client is “waiving the preliminary hearings in all of his cases,” Cottam said in open court.

The robbery case stems from an incident that began with the sale of an iPhone in July when the defendant and his wife, 22-year-old Braelie Alamillo, both of St. George, went to a prearranged location to look at an iPhone that was for sale for $400 after responding to an ad, according to a probable cause statement filed in support of the defendant’s arrest.

Minutes after the suspects arrived, the teen became suspicious that something was wrong. She reached inside of the car to retrieve the phone, which is when Braelie Alamillo allegedly started punching and kicking the teen on the head and shoulder area as Anthony Alamillo sped off with the teen’s torso still halfway inside the vehicle.

A struggle ensued until the teen grabbed the iPhone and was able to free herself. The teen then dropped off the side of the vehicle which was traveling at more than 40 mph. The victim’s foot was run over by one of the passenger’s side tires of the car. A driver traveling behind the suspects’ vehicle witnessed the incident, called 911 and was able to provide the license plate number to emergency dispatch.

Officers spotted the car shortly thereafter and located the couple a few minutes later. They were arrested and transported to Purgatory Correctional Facility where charges were filed.

Anthony Alamillo has remained in custody without bail since his arrest in July.

Legal troubles while in custody

Anthony Alamillo has three other cases trailing the aggravated robbery case, including one involving misdemeanor drug charges after narcotics were allegedly found hidden in his underwear prior to his being transferred into the general population at the jail. He was interviewed and invoked his right to an attorney and was later charged with two misdemeanor counts of possession and one count of possession of paraphernalia.

Five days later, he was again charged with identical offenses when a search of his property allegedly yielded two glass pipes and tinfoil with residue on them consistent with heroin and methamphetamine, according to police.

Problems mount — Adult Probation and Parole report 

The third case against Anthony Alamillo involves three probation violations he faces for allegedly committing new crimes while on probation, according to one progress report filed by Adult Probation and Parole July 30, three days after his arrest.

After the teen suspected she was being robbed and attempted to retrieve the iPhone from the defendant, the progress report states that Anthony Alamillo accelerated and “drove approximately 200 feet before the victim was able to fall away from the vehicle that was traveling approximately 40 mph.”

According to the report, the “totality of actions carried out by the defendant during the incident, coupled with the fact the defendant had very little money on his person, indicates the defendant had no intention of paying for the phone. “

The report concluded the “extremely callus and violent nature of the crime,” committed by Alamillo against a juvenile indicates he is an “extreme” public safety risk to the community. 

Relating to the drug charges filed while the defendant was in custody, the report said Alamillo, “went a step further,” when the defendant allegedly concealed the controlled substances in an attempt to introduce them into general population at the jail — “which has a community already at risk for such substances.”  

Adult Probation and Parole recommended that Alamillo’s probation be revoked and that he serve his original sentence of up to five years in Utah State Prison, in addition to 360 days in jail, sentences which were suspended as part of a plea agreement.

The report also requests that the sentences run consecutively with any other sentence the defendant serves. The probation violations and recommendations by Adult Probation and Parole will be scheduled for a hearing once the robbery case is resolved. 

A trial date on the robbery case has yet to be scheduled.

The defendant’s wife, Braelie Alamillo, is scheduled for a preliminary hearing Dec. 12. Court records indicate a “global resolution” may be in the works.

Copyright St. George News, LLC, 2019, all rights reserved.

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