Police: Fight in gym locker room breaks out over stolen keys, vehicle burglary

St. George Police cruiser stock image | Photo by Austin Peck, St. George News

ST. GEORGE — Police broke up a fight in the locker room of a St. George gym Monday afternoon after one gym-goer had reportedly been rifling through other people’s belongings and burglarizing their vehicles as they worked out.

Max Micah Wadley, of St. George, Utah, booking photo posted Sept. 4, 2017 | Photo courtesy of the Washington County Sheriff’s Office, St. George News

Officers responded to a report of disorderly conduct and a fight in the locker room at Performance Fitness, 587 N. 600 West, according to a probable cause statement filed by the St. George Police Department in support of the arrest.

The first witness told police that a man, later identified as 21-year-old Max Wadley, was in the locker room “acting strangely” and that he was talking on an old black flip phone, the arresting officer wrote in a sworn statement.

“Max (Wadley) was dumping the trash cans out into the showers,” the arresting officer stated.

The witness left his property in a locker without a lock on the locker, according to the statement. When he returned after his workout, he noticed the keys to his Toyota Tacoma truck were missing.

He then went to his truck and noticed it was unlocked, that his property had been pulled out of place and that some of his personal property had been stolen from the truck, the report stated.

“He also noticed a black flip cellphone on his front seat,” the officer wrote in the statement. “He recognized the phone as the one Max (Wadley) had been using in the locker room.”

The witness found a friend at the gym and they confronted Wadley in the locker room about the stolen property, according to the statement. When they asked him to return the property, Wadley allegedly became confrontational and assaulted them. Officers arrived and separated the individuals.

Another vehicle burglary had been reported hours earlier at the same location, the report stated. The burglary involved a similar situation in which keys to a Saturn Ion were taken from unsecured property in the locker room. The vehicle was burglarized and $200 worth of property was stolen.

Performance Fitness surveillance footage showed Wadley unlawfully entering the Saturn, the report stated, adding that the property reported stolen from the Saturn was located in Wadley’s backpack.

Additional stolen property was found in Wadley’s Ford F-150 truck in the parking lot, according to the police statement.

Wadley was arrested and transported to Dixie Regional Medical Center in St. George for medical clearance before being booked into the Washington County Purgatory Correctional Facility.

The Washington County Attorney’s Office filed an information in 5th District Court accusing Wadley of two third-degree felony counts of theft by receiving stolen property; two class A misdemeanor counts of burglary of a vehicle; and two class B misdemeanor counts of assault.

Judge John Walton, of the 5th District Court, ordered $7,500 bail for Wadley’s release pending trial. Wadley was found indigent by the court during his initial court appearance Tuesday and will be represented by court-appointed attorney Douglas Terry.

Wadley remains in police custody as this report publishes.

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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Twitter: @STGnews

Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2017, all rights reserved.

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  • Caveat_Emptor September 7, 2017 at 9:07 am

    Was Max Wadley a dues paying member of Performance Fitness?
    Just wondering what authorization he had to be there in the first place, assuming that the business is not open to the general public. Membership would require a photo ID and simple background information.

    • Drizzy September 7, 2017 at 10:16 pm

      He must have been a paying member because they scan your fingerprint to get into this gym.

  • Drizzy September 7, 2017 at 10:28 pm

    There is video going around social media of this suspect getting jumped by the victim and his friend. The suspect gets the … kicked out of him, enough to send him to the hospital yet his booking photo he isn’t beat up? The victim posted more footage of the cops thanking the victim for beating up the suspect because they hate … thieves. I get the suspect takes the risk of getting his … beat but how is the victim and his friend not arrested for assault as well? Why are the local police encouraging violence??
    Ed. ellipses.

  • comments September 8, 2017 at 6:20 pm

    dont they have lockers that actually lock? i dont get it

    • comments September 8, 2017 at 6:20 pm

      even in hs u put a lock on a locker. why be so naively trusting?

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