MIDVALE, Utah – Two people were taken into custody after they allegedly burglarized a church and a flower shop while intoxicated, and police said one of the suspects fought with police and bit an officer with enough force to break skin before being subdued.
Officers responded to a meetinghouse owned by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints at 97 E. 7100 South after a resident reported hearing the sound of breaking glass.
Lt. Justin Hoyal of the Unified Police Department said responding officers observed a man and a woman taking several items from the church, including a microwave.
According to statements of probable cause from the Salt Lake County Sheriff’s Office, both suspects fled despite officers yelling at them to stop. An officer overtook the female suspect, and as he attempted to take her into custody, the woman bit the officer, breaking the skin. The woman continued to resist and then tried to flee again, which is when the officer used a Taser to subdue her.
More officers responded to contain the area, and a short time later the male suspect was found hiding underneath a vehicle in a driveway. He refused to come out from beneath the car, and after refusing repeated orders he attempted to flee on foot again, according to the PC statement.
A Taser was used to subdue the man.
The documents stated that the odor of alcohol could be detected on the breath of both suspects. The PC statements for both suspects states that both “admitted in the context of several excited utterances” the reason for their actions was because they “hate the Mormon Church and wanted to damage the interior.”
The female suspect also told an officer, “she is ‘very pissed’ at her boyfriend for involving her in ‘breaking into that f—— Mormon Church!’”
Officers then received a report of a burglary at a floral shop in that area, and they found several items taken in that burglary mixed in with the items the suspect’s had allegedly taken from the LDS church building.
Krystal Dawn Pressley was booked on the following charges: burglary, interference with arresting officer, public intoxication, assault on a police officer, failure to stop at the command of a police officer and criminal mischief.
Jacob Willis Downing was booked on the following charges: burglary, failure to stop at the command of a police officer, interference with arresting officer, public intoxication and criminal mischief.
Both were booked into the Salt Lake County Jail.
The officer who was bitten was taken to a local hospital for treatment.