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Scott G. Winterton, KSL, File

Troopers seek man who pepper-sprayed 2 officers in northern Utah

By Pat Reavy, KSL | Posted - Sep. 18, 2020 at 4:08 p.m.



BRIGHAM CITY — Two officers were assaulted Wednesday in Box Elder County with pepper spray, causing minor injuries.

Just after 9:30 p.m., a Utah Highway Patrol trooper stopped two pedestrians walking on the railroad tracks just off I-15 near Brigham City. UHP Lt. Nick Street said walking on Union Pacific tracks is considered trespassing, and the two were in an area that pedestrians aren’t normally seen, he said.

One person was cooperative and allowed to leave. But the other man refused to give his name, claimed he couldn’t remember his birth date, and declined to have his fingerprints scanned, Street said.

A Mantua, Box Elder County, officer was then called to assist with the stop. Because the man refused to give his identity, the trooper attempted to place him under arrest, according to Street.

As the trooper grabbed the man’s arm to arrest him, he turned and deployed pepper spray on both the trooper and Mantua officer.

“A brief struggle between the suspect and officers occurred and the trooper deployed his Taser but it either missed or had no effect on the suspect,” Street said.

The man ran into a field, but officers from several jurisdictions, including three police K-9 officers, could not find him.

One of the K-9s “tracked the suspect to an area on the railroad tracks then stopped,” the UHP stated. A slow moving train had just gone through the area and the police thought the man might have jumped on it. Street said the train was headed to Pocatello, Idaho. Law enforcement had the train searched but did not find the man, he said.

The trooper later found the second pedestrian who was allowed to leave the scene, but that man said he had met the other man in the Rio Grande area of Salt Lake City and didn’t know his real name, Street said.

The search for the man who attacked the officers continued Friday.

Pat Reavy

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