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PUBLIC RELATIONS UNIT DECEMBER 22, 2023

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Media Contact Information: PolicePRUnit@slcgov.com

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SLCPD Pioneer Patrol Division Arrest 14 People, Seize Fentanyl During Drug Operations

SALT LAKE CITY — Officers and patrol sergeants with the Salt Lake City Police Department’s Pioneer Patrol Division arrested 14 people during a coordinated effort to reduce criminal activity along the Jordan River Trail.

“Ensuring the safety and wellbeing of our community is a priority for the Salt Lake City Police Department,” said Chief Mike Brown. “We will not allow people to jeopardize that safety by allowing drugs to be distributed in our community.”

The first operation, coordinated by a dayshift patrol squad assigned to the Pioneer Patrol Division, happened on Monday, December 18, 2023, near 1200 West North Temple.

Officers arrested four people including Joshua Bailey, Vahdat Sadeghpour, Nathaniel Lebaron, and Jeremy Houghton on possession or use of a controlled substance.

The second operation, held on Thursday, December 21, 2023, led by the Pioneer Patrol Division graveyard shift, with the assistance of the Salt Lake City Police Department’s K-9 Unit and Pioneer Division Bike Squad, resulted in nine people being arrested and one person released on a criminal citation.

The intent of both operations focused on identifying drug dealers along the Jordan River Trail.

During Thursday’s operation, officers contacted 35 people along the Jordan River Trail near 1200 West North Temple.

To ensure officer safety, additional resources from the Salt Lake City Police Department’s Central and Liberty patrol divisions responded to assist with securing an area while officers conducted their investigation.

Officers performed foot patrols and utilized one of the department’s utility side-by-side vehicles to patrol the Jordan River Trail.

Officers recovered 70 blue fentanyl bills, approximately $400, a knife, and other drug paraphernalia during Thursday’s operation.

Officers booked the following people into the Salt Lake County Metro Jail:

·      Dillon Christensen, 31, possession of a controlled substance, failure to stop at the command of law enforcement, use or possession of drug paraphernalia, and interfering with an arresting officer.

·      Celest Foster, 22, use of possession of drug paraphernalia and outstanding warrants for retail theft, expired driver’s license, violation of a jail release agreement, and assault.

·      Carlos Ferrara-Lopez, 33, failing to stop at the command of law enforcement, possession of a controlled substance, possession of a controlled substance (marijuana or spice), interfering with an arresting officer, and outstanding warrants for use or possession of drug paraphernalia, failure to disclose identity, no valid driver’s license, failure to register a vehicle, and other vehicle-related offenses.

·      Reilly Kirton, 22, giving false personal identification information to a peace officer and outstanding warrants for robbery and purchasing or possession of tobacco by a minor.

·      Jason David Ramirez, 28, outstanding warrants for possession or use of a controlled substance, possession of a controlled substance, use or possession of drug paraphernalia, and criminal trespassing.

·      John Doe, unknown age, providing false information to a peace officer.

·      Thomas Jaramillo, 42, outstanding warrants for possession or use of a controlled substance, use or possession of drug paraphernalia, and mail theft.

·      Shawnie Bagshaw, 44, use of possession of drug paraphernalia and outstanding warrants for possession or use of a controlled substance.

Officers cited and released 27-year-old Adrian Chavria for criminal trespassing and violating city park curfew.

“I want to acknowledge the work of our patrol officers and supervisors,” said Chief Brown. “Our patrol officers have a deep understanding of their beats, and we are proud that they are empowered to develop proactive strategies to help reduce crime and keep our communities safe.”

Charges are only allegations, and every arrested person is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.

The Salt Lake City Police Department is not the custodian of record for jail booking photos. Utah Code 17-22-30 mostly prohibits the release of jail booking photos. Generally, a jail booking photo can only be released by the custodian of record after a conviction or when law enforcement determines the person is a fugitive or an imminent threat to a person or public safety. In Salt Lake City, the Salt Lake County Sheriff’s Office is the custodian of record for jail booking photos.

A photo of some of the drugs seized during Thursday’s operation is being released. Media may use this photo with credit to the Salt Lake City Police Department.

Photo: Evidence seized by the Salt Lake City Police Department’s Pioneer Patrol Division during a drug enforcement mission (SLCPD photo, December 21, 2023).

 

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