ST. GEORGE – Philip John Herena, 58, listed as a transient in St. George, is accused of spitting on a police officer who was responding to a suspicious person report at a St. George residence.
Officers responded to a report of a suspicious person in a home which was being remodeled in the area of 60 West 400 North, according to a probable cause statement written by St. George Police Officer Timothy Linton.
Neighbors reported they could hear screaming and loud music coming from the residence, the statement said.
“While I was waiting at the door I could hear the music and screaming coming from the house,” Linton wrote in the statement. “(Herena) answered the door with a beer in his hand.”
Linton asked Herena if he could confirm he had permission to be at the home, according to the statement. Herena told Linton he could come inside the home while he grabbed his identification.
During the investigation, dispatch advised Linton that Herena had two warrants for his arrest issued by the Washington County Justice Court and a no-bail warrant issued by the Utah Board of Pardons for a parole violation.
Herena was placed under arrest for the three warrants.
Throughout the investigation, Herena threatened to fight officers, the statement said, and during the transport to the Washington County Purgatory Correctional Facility, he began spitting at police through the holes of the cage barrier inside the police car while continuing to make threats of violence.
“When I arrived at the jail,” Linton said, “(Herena) spit at me when I opened the door to talk to him.”
Herena had to forcibly be removed from the patrol car by deputies at the correctional facility and put into his jail cell, the statement said.
Herena was booked into the correctional facility for one third-degree felony warrant and two class B misdemeanor warrants, and faces an additional class A misdemeanor charge for “propelling substance” at an officer.
Judge John J. Walton, of the 5th District Court, ordered Philip’s cash-only bail amount set at $5,000 during his initial court appearance Monday. He is scheduled to make his next court appearance on April 13, where he will be represented by court-appointed attorney Douglas Terry.
Persons arrested or charged are presumed innocent until found guilty in a court of law or as otherwise decided by a trier-of-fact.
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