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Local law enforcement successfully conclude active manhunt for armed suspect in Kanab

The search for the armed suspect took place both on foot and in the air, with the helicopter searching up and down the creek and surrounding neighborhoods. Photo by Brooke Knighton.

Reports came in on the morning of August 9, of increased police presence around the Stampin’ Up building and the homes across the creek. Citizens were warned by law enforcement to stay in their homes, lock their doors and cars and to check the seats of any cars outside of garages before getting inside. Law enforcement officers were in active pursuit of a fleeing suspect; pursuit which included SWAT response on the bridges across the creek, and a helicopter in aerial pursuit. Multiple armed private citizens began patrolling the neighborhood as well, described by a witness as a “hometown militia.” Witnesses had seen the suspect being pursued into Kanab in a Jeep, later confirmed to have been stolen - the suspect abandoned the vehicle near Kanab Creek in the vicinity of the Stampin’ Up building.

The situation escalated as the suspect began fleeing on foot and was suspected to be armed. The suspect was sighted having crossed the creek toward the Ranchos neighborhood around 7 a.m. Law enforcement officials from the Kanab Police Department, Kane County Sheriff’s Office and Utah Highway Patrol responded to the report and began a search in the Ranchos.

Around 9 a.m., a citizen who lives in the area reported their vehicle, a Black Volkswagen Jetta, had been stolen and their credit card was being used in the Page, Ariz. area. Local law enforcement had notified their Page counterparts of the situation, and an officer in Page was able to spot the vehicle, pull over and confirm that the driver was the fleeing suspect and put him into custody in Page. The suspect’s charges are in Kane County, necessitating the process of expediting him back across the border.

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This incident is part of an ongoing investigation involving a trespassing and theft that occurred in the Bryce Woodlands subdivision on the Kane County line; the stolen Jeep, later flagged by the KCSO, had been taken, along with a trailer and an ATV, on August 8. There was a brief pursuit at that time, during which the trailer separated from the Jeep mid-pursuit, crashing into a ditch, and the Jeep escaped pursuers. On the morning of August 9, a Kane County Sheriff’s Deputy returned to retrieve the trailer and ATV, at which point he encountered the Jeep again, initiating the chase that resulted in August 9, morning’s events.

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