Marble shootings continue, two people injured
July 27, 2012
The authorities continue to search for suspects in a series of cases in Park City and the Snyderville Basin involving someone shooting marbles or other projectiles at people, moving vehicles and buildings.
The cases have stretched since last fall, but there has been heightened urgency in the law-enforcement agencies in recent weeks as a pedestrian and two drivers have been targeted. Phil Kirk, a Park City Police Department captain, said the authorities have developed leads in the last 10 days. He declined to provide details. The Summit County Sheriff’s Office is also involved in the investigation.
Two people have been injured in the marble cases.
On July 16, at a little before noon, a marble struck the windshield of a cement truck at the intersection of S.R. 224 and Meadows Drive. Glass shards flew into the face and neck of the driver.
In the overnight hours of July 17, at 1:21 a.m., a taxi driver at the same intersection was struck by a marble while a window was down. The driver was hit in the cheek and declined medical treatment.
The cement truck driver is 41 years old and from West Jordan. The taxi driver is 21 years old and from Salt Lake City.
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The taxi driver pulled over after being hit, found the marble that hit him, which was still inside the vehicle, and drove to the Park Avenue police station to report the case. Police officers and Sheriff’s Office deputies descended on the intersection looking for a suspect and evidence. A bloodhound was brought to the scene. Kirk said another marble was found.
Meanwhile, the police received a report that a pedestrian was targeted at the Deer Valley Drive-Park Avenue intersection on July 6 at between 1 p.m. and 2 p.m. The person was not hit and the projectile struck a nearby building, the police said. The person told the police the shooter might have been driving a dark-colored older model sedan. The case was reported two weeks after the incident occurred.
The police have received approximately 40 reports since last September. The earlier cases involved real estate firms, banks, other sorts of businesses and a few residences. There were also cases reported outside of Park City, including one in which a Police Department vehicle was hit while an officer was driving.
"You’re shooting at people, those projectiles, you could be looking at serious injuries," Kirk said after the cases involving moving vehicles were reported, noting that the shooter could cause an accident.
He called the cases targeting drivers are "more brazen, more dangerous" than the earlier ones that damaged the buildings.
The police have recovered marbles in some of the cases. The police have said the perpetrator likely has been using a slingshot, a wrist rocket or a paintball gun loaded with marbles. An estimate of the total dollar figure of the damage has not been compiled. The Police Department pegged the damage as of mid-June inside the city limits at approximately $20,000, however.
A $2,500 reward has been posted for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the people involved. A real estate firm and two banks that had been targeted posted the reward.
People who have information may contact the Police Department at 615-5500 or the department’s anonymous-tip line, 615-5847. The police also offer an online tip form on City Hall website, http://www.parkcity.org. Select the ‘City Directory’ option under the ‘Government’ button and then select ‘Police.’ Choose ‘Crime Reports – TipSoft’ and then the http://www.tipsubmit.com link at the bottom of the page. The direct link is: https://www.tipsubmit.com/WebTips.aspx?AgencyID=994