Alleged vandal leaves behind his Book of Mormon at scene of the crime

Local News

PROVO (ABC4 Utah News) – A man was arrested for trashing a Smith’s grocery store Tuesday and was caught because of an item he left behind.


Police say that 49 year old Kevin Morris had already trespassed at this Smith’s on Freedom Boulevard last year.  Sergeant Brian Taylor of the Provo Police Department says that on Tuesday afternoon he came back and allegedly vandalized an employees-only area before escaping through an alarmed door.

“We quickly realized with the help of store management that that individual had badly damaged an employee breakroom,” Sgt. Taylor said. “He had smashed out ceiling tiles, causing $4000 to $5000 of damage.”

Store employees were able to identify Mr. Morris through surveillance video and by what he left behind: a copy of The Book of Mormon with his name on it.

“Store managers found a Book of Mormon in that breakroom and found it inscribed with that suspect’s name and returned it to the police,” Sgt. Taylor said. “It just seems that Mr. Morris dropped or left a book that had been inscribed as a gift to him at some point.”

Now they’re throwing the book at him. Morris faces charges of burglary, criminal trespass and criminal mischief.

In his Probable Cause statement, the arresting officer writes “Kevin said that he believed someone was chasing him with a gun, so he had to get away from them….Kevin often suffers from paranoia from his mental health along with his methamphetamine use (which he admits to and said he used meth last night).”

“We’re concerned about him,” Sgt. Taylor said. “He’s going to get appropriate attention from the criminal justice system and we hope he gets every other appropriate help.”

Sgt. Taylor said that Morris has asked to get his Book of Mormon back.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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