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Court Reports


Wyoming woman sentenced after distributing drugs in jail

A woman was sentenced to six month of jail time Monday after distributing heroin and methamphetamines to other Summit County Jail inmates.

According to the charging document filed in third-district court, Christopher Frank Kiren, 39, from Wyoming, was pulled over on Sept. 26 for failing to signal while merging lanes and turning. When Deputy Zagg Taylor searched the state vehicle and criminal records, he discovered the car’s owner, Dani Ann Nichols, 25, from Wyoming, had two warrants.

Taylor found a woman matching Nichols’ description in the passenger seat, but she denied being Nichols and gave a false name. Kiren corroborated and said Nichols was his sister. When asked, Nichols said she did not have any ID.

When Kiren was questioned outside the car, he admitted the passenger was Nichols and, knowing she had warrants, he lied so she would not get in trouble.

Kiren and Nichols were arrested for providing false information to a police officer. During a vehicle search, Taylor located four grams of heroin, a needle, a burnt spoon, razor blades and other drug paraphernalia.

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Both Kiren and Nichols were charged with third-degree felony possession for use of a controlled substance, class A misdemeanor giving false information to a peace officer and class B misdemeanor use or possession of drug paraphernalia.

Two days after Nichols was booked into the Summit County Jail, several female inmates tested positive for heroin and methamphetamine. Two of them reported Nichols had smuggled drugs into the jail using a body cavity. They also reported seeing Nichols use a needle to inject heroin.

Nichols now faces additional charges of two counts of first-degree felony distribution of a controlled substance, two counts of second-degree felony distribution of a controlled substance and second-degree felony possession or use of a controlled substance.

"She is going to be serving six months in our Summit County Jail," Summit County Attorney David Brickey said. "And then she’ll be deported back to her native state of Wyoming where they have filed similar charge of heroin distribution."

Park City man steals from employer

A Kimball Junction store employee, Joel Armendariz, 20, of Park City, used his company’s electronic transaction journals to link large customer transactions throughout the United States to several reward accounts he had set up, according to the charging document.

Armendariz used the accounts to redeem points for store gift certificates. During his two years of employment between June 2010 and June 2012, he fraudulently acquired enough points to redeem $5,840 in gift certificates.

After pleading guilty to third-degree felony theft, Armendariz was sentenced Monday to a zero to five years prison term, 36 months probation and 100 hours of community service. He also agreed to forfeit his $5,000 cash bond to pay his restitution obligation to the store.

Thirty-nine grams of methamphetamine found in car search

Utah Highway Patrol Trooper Thomas Simpson stopped a speeding vehicle on I-80 in Summit County on Nov. 20. When he approached the vehicle, Simpson smelled marijuana. A search revealed two grams of marijuana, which passenger Christopher Ernest Miller, 38, from Montana, said was his, according to the charging document.

The criminal pleading also alleged Simpson found 39 grams of methamphetamine, a butane lighter, marijuana pipe and a glass pipe in a duffle bag and purse belonging to Sandra Lee Bjork, 49, from Montana.

Bjork was charged on Nov. 28 with second-degree felony possession or use of a controlled substance and class B misdemeanor possession or use of drug paraphernalia.

Miller was charged with third-degree felony possession or use of a controlled substance.

Bjork and Miller both have court appearances scheduled for Dec. 3.

Mom charged after lying to protect her son

Shelly Sargent, 47, of Henefer, was charged Monday with class A misdemeanor obstruction of justice and class B misdemeanor contributing to the delinquency of a minor, after allegedly making a false statement to deputies when they arrived at the scene of an accident involving her minor son, according to the criminal pleading.

According to court reports, a man failed to yield the right-of-way to a 16-year-old minor in Coalville, which resulted in a collision. The teen has a learner’s permit and must have a parent or responsible adult riding with him in the car’s front passenger seat.

The teen claimed his girlfriend was riding in the front passenger seat, and his mom, Sargent, was riding in the car’s back seat when the accident occurred. Sargent confirmed the claims.

A few days later, the father called Deputy Ken Jones to report that Sargent had not been in the car. Jones interviewed the teen and the other driver, who confirmed Sargent had not been in the car.

When Jones called Sargent to question her about the incident, Sargent allegedly became upset and yelled, "Why does it matter if I was in the car? I was a block away. Why does anyone care?"

Probation revoked for Henefer woman charged with forgery

On Monday, Mindy Ann Trussell, 32, of Henefer, admitted she had violated her probation by failing to cooperate with and maintain contact with her probation officer, according to the charging document.

She was also charged and convicted in Weber County earlier this year for driving under the influence.

The judge revoked her 24-month probation and imposed the original prison term of zero to five years.

Trussell had pled guilty in November 2011 to third-degree felony forgery.

On March 17, 2011, a woman noticed a check had been cashed from her account, which exceeded the amount she had in her account, the criminal pleading alleged. She was puzzled because she had allegedly not written the check and said she always uses a debit card for purchases.

The victim contacted the Summit County Sheriff’s Office and said she suspected her cousin, Trussell, had taken the check. The victim also provided a copy of the suspicious check along with her own checkbook for review. The investigating deputy noticed the handwriting on the suspicious check was significantly different from that used in the rest of the checkbook.

The deputy went to the towing company to which the check had been written and watched camera footage from the date on the check. The camera footage showed Trussell hand the clerk a check and accept cash in return.