HEBER CITY — A man who severely slashed his own wrist inside a Smith's Food and Drug store on New Year's Eve after being approached by police told officers he believed there was $1 billion inside the store for him.
Luis Miguel Dircio-Contreras, 21, was charged Monday in 4th District Court with aggravated assault, a third-degree felony, and retail theft, a class B misdemeanor.
Police responded to Smith's, 550 N. Main, just before 9 p.m. on Dec. 31 after receiving calls about a man brandishing a knife inside the store.
Employees told officers Dircio-Contreras had opened and consumed an alcoholic drink in the store without paying for it. When they approached him, employees said Dircio-Contreras began to follow the employees in a threatening manner with a knife that he had picked up inside the store, Heber Police Lt. Jason Bradley said.
"He was also caught going into nonpublic areas of the store," Bradley said, noting that employees were moving other customers away from the man when police arrived.
Officers were trying to talk with Dircio-Contreras when he took a step toward them with the knife and then slashed his left wrist, the lieutenant said.
"He was basically bleeding out," Bradley said. "(The officers) had to take steps to stop that."
Dircio-Contreras was taken by ambulance to Heber Valley Medical Center and then flown to University Hospital due to the severity of his injury.
Officers believe Dircio-Contreras may have been under the influence of drugs at the time of the incident.
"After an interview was conducted, it appears the suspect had been using methamphetamine for the past couple of months and was hallucinating," according to a Heber Police Department post on its Facebook page. "He thought there was a billion dollars somewhere inside Smith's for him."