Broken tail light leads to seizure of more than 12 pounds of meth

Cedar City Police vehicle, Cedar City, Utah, April 27, 2019 | File photo by Jeff Richards, St. George News / Cedar City News

ST. GEORGE — A minor traffic stop turned into a major incident for one Utah Highway Patrol trooper Thursday after a police K-9 was deployed, leading to the recovery of more than 12 pounds of methamphetamine.

Jacob Michael Renshaw,45, booking photo taken in Iron County, Utah, Sept. 16, 2020 | Photo courtesy of the Iron County Sheriff’s Office, St. George News

Late Thursday night, a UHP trooper observed a vehicle pull out of the Shell gas station on Main Street in Cedar City with a broken tail light and running lights that were redirected toward the front of the vehicle, according to charging documents filed with the court.

The trooper got behind the vehicle, which soon reportedly made a left-hand turn without stopping.

When the trooper stopped the vehicle, he became suspicious as he spoke to the occupants and deployed his K-9 to conduct a sniff around the outside of the vehicle.

When the animal indicated to the possible presence of narcotics, all occupants were ordered out of the vehicle and the trooper conducted a search, during which approximately 12 pounds of methamphetamine was allegedly recovered.

The trooper also reportedly seized one ounce of heroin and a small amount of marijuana, along with paraphernalia.

The vehicle’s occupants were transported to the UHP office in Cedar City. During a search of the driver’s wallet, who was later identified as 45-year-old Jacob Renshaw, authorities located three financial cards that did not belong to the suspect. Renshaw allegedly admitted that the owner of at least one of the cards did not know he had it.

Renshaw was subsequently transported and booked into the Iron County Jail where he faces two second-degree felony charges of possession with intent to distribute a controlled substance and three third-degree felony charges of possession-transfer information of a financial transaction card.

He also faces three misdemeanor counts of drug possession and one count of possession of paraphernalia, as well as two traffic infractions.

According to Narcotic News, the street value of one pound of methamphetamine ranges between $10,000-$16,500, so the value of the seizure is estimated to be $120,000 on the low end, or up to $198,000.

Due to “clear and convincing evidence” that the suspect constitutes a danger to the community or is likely to flee the area, the order states, Renshaw remains in custody without bail.

Copyright St. George News, LLC, 2020, all rights reserved.

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