SALT LAKE CITY — An April 20 party on the pavilion at Beaver Mountain Lodge that included marijuana joints being passed out to everyone who attended and six times more people than the event was licensed for has resulted in felony charges.
Justin Rashah Marion, 21; Medina Selimovic, 21, of Sandy; and Cole Thomas Flowers, 23, of Salt Lake City; were charged Thursday in 5th District Court with drug distribution.
Flowers is charged with a second-degree felony; the other two are charged with third-degree felony distribution. All three also face other misdemeanor charges related to drug possession and violating public health ordinances.
The three work for a digital media company, according to charging documents.
On April 21, Beaver County sheriff's deputies, Utah Highway Patrol troopers and U.S. Forest rangers were called to the Beaver Mountain Guest Lodge to help deal with a large party and to evict people.
The property manager showed authorities advertisements for an event called "Utah 420 Spring Fest" and a Facebook post by Selimovic inviting people to celebrate her 21st birthday, the charges state.
Investigators say the flyers advertised free gift bags for the first 1,000 people as well as a "free joint" and "six free shots."
April 20 is the day those involved in the cannabis culture celebrate smoking marijuana, some referring to it as National Smoke Weed Day.
The property manager told deputies "there were over 50 persons at the property and (they) were only permitted to have eight," according to court documents.
Police shut down the "loud music and light show" and told people to leave. The DJ crew, which was determined not to be affiliated with the party organizers, told authorities that "marijuana cigarettes were being handed out to everyone" on the night of April 20, according to the charges.
Investigators searched a vehicle belonging to one of the event organizers and found drug paraphernalia, the charges state. Investigators searched some of the rooms and kitchen area of the pavilion where more drug paraphernalia and alcohol was found, the charges state. The next day, the cleaning crew for the lodge reported finding even more items, police say, including more than 30 marijuana cigarettes. Some of the items were found discarded "in the trees and brush area."
Court documents say all thee defendants have either been charged previously with drug-related crimes or have current warrants.
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