Main Street smash-and-grab suspects elude capture after high-speed chase
Someone smashed their way into a Main Street jewelry store early Tuesday morning, stealing rings, earrings and necklaces, and then eluded capture after leading the authorities on a high-speed chase.
The Park City Police Department later on Tuesday was continuing to search for the suspects. Investigators spent nearly seven hours at Baranof Jewelers lasting through late in the morning. The glass on the front door was smashed and the shards were piled on the ground. Yellow police caution tape blocked people from entering the door. Several police officers could be seen inside at a little after 8 a.m.
Rick Ryan, a police captain, said a panic alarm at the store was triggered at approximately 4:15 a.m. The alarm company then contacted the Police Department. Ryan said a delivery driver at about the same time called 911 reporting he saw two people running from the jewelry store, get into a car and leave.
Ryan said the delivery driver followed the suspect vehicle northbound on Deer Valley Drive, onto Bonanza Drive and then onto eastbound Kearns Boulevard. Police officers caught up to the suspect vehicle and attempted to pull it over. The vehicle did not stop and the pursuit started. Ryan said speeds reached up to 65 mph on Kearns Boulevard, where the posted speed limit is 35 mph.
The chase continued on S.R. 248 eastbound toward Kamas. Ryan said speeds reached 90 mph on S.R. 248. The Summit County Sheriff’s Office put down tire spikes on S.R. 248 just west of Kamas, Ryan said. The suspect vehicle drove over the spikes and continued into Kamas. Police officers temporarily lost sight of the vehicle. Ryan said the police found the Ford Taurus abandoned with the engine still running in a vacant lot on Center Street in Kamas. The driver’s door and the front passenger door were open, leading the police to believe two people were in the vehicle. Up to six police officers and Sheriff’s Office deputies were involved in the search for the suspect, Ryan said. A Sheriff’s Office police dog was brought to Kamas to assist in the search, he said.
The vehicle is registered to an owner with a Taylorsville address, Ryan said. The police are unsure whether the suspect owns the vehicle. The police believe at least two people were inside the vehicle during the chase.
The Summit County Sheriff’s Office said the police found a wallet on the driver’s seat of the vehicle with a driver license inside. The Sheriff’s Office said the driver license apparently belongs to someone who lives in the Salt Lake Valley. The Sheriff’s Office said the person is wanted on several unspecified arrest warrants.
The suspects smashed two display cases in the store and took the jewelry. The Police Department did not immediately have details about the jewelry. Ryan said the police did not have a dollar estimate on the jewelry. Ryan said a few pieces of jewelry were found in the vehicle, but the majority of them were not recovered.
Ryan said no other smash-and-grab burglaries were reported on Main Street at about the same time. Smash-and-grab burglaries are rare on Main Street.
A manager at the jewelry store declined to comment.
The Sheriff’s Office sent a reverse 911 call to just under 2,000 phone lines in the Kamas area as the search was underway, Justin Martinez, a captain, said. The call advised people be alert and call the Sheriff’s Office if they saw anything suspicious.
People with information about the case may contact the Police Department at 615-5500 or the Sheriff’s Office at 615-3500.
The Park City Planning Commission on Wednesday approved a City Hall workforce or otherwise restricted housing development slated for the northern reaches of Old Town.