MURRAY, Utah -- At least five men are behind bars after being arrested in connection with a long list of crimes, and police say it all started with an armed carjacking.
Multiple suspects have been booked at the Salt Lake County Jail, and, according to police, they could be connected to a whole slew of felony offenses across several jurisdictions here in the Salt Lake valley.
Police say the latest part of the crime wave began Monday morning, when Peggy Larsen was carjacked at gunpoint in her own driveway in Murray while she was taking her grandson to school.
She said: "Flies across the seat, puts a gun right on my head and says; 'Get out the car B----!", just like that, and I just started screaming. The guy seemed so desperate."
Larsen managed to get out of the car, but the suspect sped away—running over her foot in the process.
Her car was later found near a Target store in Cottonwood Heights. Police then tracked several suspects to a nearby apartment complex, where they made arrests while seizing drugs and firearms.
But, detectives still didn't have a solid link to the carjacking.
Then, Thursday night, a loss prevention officer at the same Target store called police about a suspicious vehicle and two men inside the store.
Officers arrived and say they caught the suspects shoplifting, and, after a short struggle, two men were arrested.
Police said they recovered weapons and other evidence linking the suspects—including 27-year-old Steven Hancock, 20-year-old Diareece McCarty, and 22-year-old Corey Heyen—to the Murray carjacking and several other crimes in Cottonwood Heights and Salt Lake City.
“They're looking at charges involving theft, possession of stolen property, armed robbery," said Sgt. Ryan Shosted of the Cottonwood Heights Police Department.
It’s a group police, and Peggy Larsen, are relieved to have off the street.
Larsen said: "Something like that can happen in a safe, nice, neighborhood: It's terrifying!"
The suspects will likely make their first appearances in court sometime next week.