Police: Nude street scene ends in drug bust, arrest of 2 Washington City residents

Stock image of a Washington City Police Officer in uniform | Photo by Cody Blowers, St. George News

ST. GEORGE — What began as a woman running through traffic in her underwear ended in a drug bust and the arrest of two Washington City residents, police say.

On Monday afternoon, officers were dispatched to Mall Drive on a report of a woman running in the middle of the street in front of several moving vehicles “wearing just underwear,” according to a probable cause statement filed in support of the arrest. 

Upon arrival, police say the woman appeared to be under the influence, “hallucinating, running in front of moving vehicles and fighting with police,” and she was transported to St. George Regional Hospital. 

Officers then made their way to the address listed on the emergency call. A witness at the scene pointed out a residence where they saw the woman running out of and said she was being chased by a naked man.

Officers spoke to three of the individuals who were inside the residence, including the two homeowners, and all showed signs of being under the influence of a narcotic, hallucinating and appearing lethargic, according to the report.

Substances that were collected during a search of a Washington City home that led to two arrests, Washington City, Utah, March 11, 2024 | Photo courtesy of the Washington City Police Department, St. George News

“All three individuals made comments about being on acid and stated they were having ‘a bad trip,’” the officer wrote. 

Medical personnel responded to the residence and checked the three individuals, one of whom was transported to the hospital for further treatment. 

After obtaining a search warrant for the property, officers searched the residence. In the kitchen and one of the bedrooms, officers reportedly recovered several illicit substances, including more than 50 MDMA pills, that were in packaging consistent with drug distribution. Officers also recovered Ketamine and 1.5 ounces of GHB. 

The search also yielded packages of psilocybin mushrooms and LSD, a glass vial of suspected cocaine, and marijuana that included edibles and THC vapes and strips that appeared to have come from a dispensary, the report states. 

Officers say they also found a small clear baggie labeled “Adderall” in one of the bedrooms, but no associated prescription bottle was found. 

All substances were later confirmed through field testing conducted at the scene. 

Following the search, officers arrested the two homeowners, 52-year-old Marvin Allan Stodola and Loriann McArthur Cottam, 49, both of Washington City. 

The pair was booked into jail on three second-degree felony counts of possession with intent to distribute a controlled substance. The pair also faces four misdemeanor drug and paraphernalia charges each.

A no-bail order for each of the suspects was signed following the arrests and the charges were filed. On Tuesday, Cottam appeared in 5th District Court in St. George, while Stodola is scheduled to make an initial appearance on Friday.

This report is based on statements from court records, police or other responders and may not contain the full scope of findings. Persons arrested or charged are presumed innocent until found guilty in a court of law or as otherwise decided by a trier-of-fact.

Ed. Note: The woman who was reportedly running naked on Mall Drive was not the homeowner, as was stated in the report, but was another individual who had left the residence shortly before the 911 call was made.

Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2024, all rights reserved.

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