UPDATE: Case dropped against man arrested in St. George shooting

Southern Utah News

Handcuffs sit on a table in this file photo. (Credit: Getty Images)

WEDNESDAY 6/2/2021 10:00 a.m.

ST. GEORGE, Utah (ABC4) – The case against a man accused of shooting and injuring a man in St. George has been dismissed.

Court documents obtained by ABC4 say prosecutors found through the investigation, “including the discovery of additional evidence,” that there is “insufficient probable cause” that the 18-year-old man arrested committed the alleged crimes.

A Washington County judge signed the order on June 1, officially closing the case against the suspect, who ABC4 will not identify.

Original Story: St.George man allegedly shoots person at park, flees from police

SUNDAY 5/23/2021 12:47 p.m.

ST. GEORGE, Utah (ABC4) – A man is in custody after allegedly shooting at a 20-year-old man and his group of friends, Wednesday.

According to arresting documents, an 18-year-old man was taken into custody after allegedly striking a man with a bullet during a verbal altercation on May 16.

Officers with St. George PD tell ABC4, that on May 16, their team was dispatched to Mathis Park on a reported weapons offense. When the officers arrived on scene they met with witnesses and learned that there were several people in the park that appeared to have been fighting.

As officers further investigated the scene, officials learned witnesses heard several gunshots come from the direction of where the people were fighting, and they all fled the area before STGPD arrived.

“Officers canvassed the area and discovered the area inside the park where the shooting took place. This was based on spent bullet casings and bloodstain evidence located in the park,” a court affidavit reads.

Detectives say six spent casings from a 9MM handgun as well as five projectiles were located in the grass in the middle of the park within close proximity.

While the officers were investigating this crime scene, they were then contacted by the on-duty officer at an area hospital who advised them of a vehicle that pulled into the ER driveway.

According to the on-duty officer at the hospital, three young adult males were inside who were assisting a fourth into the ER. This fourth male had a gunshot wound to the small of his back.

Court documents tell ABC4, as the party involved received treatment, officers interviewed the victim.

“[The victim] used to hang out with [the suspect]… [The victim] learned that [the suspect] was involved with using and dealing drugs, so he cut ties with [the suspect] which resulted in some animosity between them,” court documents add.

After conducting an interview with the victim and his family, officers began searching for the alleged suspect.

On May 19, patrol officers located the suspect during a traffic stop. As officers spoke with him, he allegedly provided false information as to his identity and then fled from the scene. As the suspect fled, officers quickly caught up and then apprehended him, according to arresting documents.

“[The suspect] was then transported to the hospital for injuries he claimed were related to the altercation at the park,” officials add.

As detectives spoke with the suspect regarding the altercation, he “gave numerous conflicting statements” and “several lies and inconsistencies.”

According to the St. George Police Department, the suspect currently is facing charges for aggravated assault and four counts of felony discharge of a firearm.

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