A series of automobile accidents kept the Sevier County Sheriff’s Office hopping May 9 and 10.
First deputies were dispatched to 950 North 200 East in Elsinore for a vehicle that had slid off the road and hit a concrete barrier.
“The deputy arrived on scene and there was an unoccupied black Chevy Impala on the side of the road,” said Sevier County Sheriff Nate Curtis. “The front end of the vehicle was damaged and was lodged on several large concrete slabs. There was an oil trail leading from the vehicle approximately 50 feet back along the shoulder of the roadway.”
Curtis said it appeared the vehicle was traveling south and had drifted off the right shoulder of the road, striking the Elsinore town sign and several large rocks before smashing into the concrete slabs.
There was no one in the Impala, so a license plate records search revealed the owner to be a Randall Blackham, 27, St. George.
There were footprints all around the vehicle as well as an empty box of clay pigeons and a black Colorado Rockies ball cap.
“Information received from some Richfield City officers indicated the owner of the vehicle may be staying at a house in Elsinore,” Curtis said.
The deputy arrived at the residence and made contact with Randall and his brother, Tyler Blackam, 29, St. George.
“The brothers said they were coming home and a deer had ran in front of the vehicle and they crashed off the side of the road,” Curtis said. He said Randall told the deputy that since it was late, he intended to report the accident in the morning.
“Randall and Tyler eventually admitted that they were out shooting guns and drinking,” Curtis said. He said eventually Tyler admitted that he was driving too fast and crashed the vehicle. Tyler was cited for leaving the scene of an accident with damage.
Another accident, May 9, was reported on the Redmond Field Road at approximately 9:05 p.m.
Deputies found a white Jeep pickup in a field along with two men.
One of the males was the property owner and the other witnessed the accident, according to Curtis. The witness said he was traveling east and the Jeep was going south.
The road has a sharp 90-degree corner and the witness said the truck just went straight and hit the corner of the fence. The speed limit on that road is 35 MPH and the witness estimated the Jeep was going over 50 MPH. According to the witness account, the driver was belligerent and swearing, eventually leaving the scene on foot.
The Jeep had struck a fence post hard enough to break it in half.
The driver returned to the scene while deputies were investigating the crash.
“When he realized there was a deputy there, the driver started running away again,” Curtis said.
A deputy chased down Charles Ryker Shipp, 27, Joseph, and took him into custody. Shipp was wet to his armpits and was only wearing shorts and T-shirt, according to Curtis.
“While at the scene of the crash, a subject stopped and reported the Jeep had struck a white Dodge truck that was parked at Redmond Lake,” Curtis said. “There was damage to the Jeep consistent with the report.”
Shipp was booked into the Sevier County Jail on charges of driving under the influence, failure to stop at the command of a police officer and leaving the scene of an accident.
Another crash, May 10, involved a Camaro that had gone off the road near 750 West and 500 North in Monroe and struck a fence post made out of a railroad tie.
The driver, identified as Jason Michaeli, 46, Monroe, was not coherent and appeared to have a head injury, according to Curtis.
An ambulance transported Michaeli to the Sevier Valley Hospital in Richfield for treatment of minor injuries.
“In looking for tire tracks it did not appear that the brakes were ever used,” Curtis said. “In talking to Jason, he said that he had a seizure and last that he could remember was that he was going in between 40 and 45 miles per hour.”