Man allegedly continues to huff paint following high-speed chase on I-15

Utah Highway Patrol vehicles, Cedar City, Utah, July 2018 | File photo by Jeff Richards, St. George News / Cedar City News

CEDAR CITY — Police arrested two people on suspicion of multiple charges following a high-speed chase on Interstate 15 Thursday morning.

Utah Highway Patrol Lt. Randy Riches said the incident began around 9:30 a.m. on southbound I-15 when a Beaver County Sheriff’s deputy attempted to pull over the driver of a maroon Honda Accord for speeding. The car, which had Ohio license plates, was reportedly traveling 111 mph, or 31 mph above the posted speed limit.

UHP troopers who were positioned at Exit 95 and further south then made two attempts to deploy spike strips to flatten the car’s tires, but were not successful, as the driver was reportedly changing lanes frequently and following other vehicles too closely.

“We had several other locations along I-15 south of that location where troopers and deputies and Parowan City officers were preparing to deploy spikes if need be,” Riches told Cedar City News.

At approximately mile marker 86, the vehicle, which had been traveling as fast as 120 mph, slowed to approximately 60 mph. At that point, a pursuing UHP trooper was able to successfully execute a PIT maneuver, which sent the suspects’ car off the road and into the center median, Riches said.

After the car came to a stop, the female driver, identified as Korie Jo Wolfe, 36, exited the car immediately and was taken into custody. However, the male passenger, identified as James Edward Snow, 39, remained seated in the vehicle and initially refused to get out.

Korie Jo Wolfe booking photo, Iron County Jail, Cedar City, Utah, Jan. 14, 2021 | Photo courtesy of Iron County Sheriff’s Office, St. George News / Cedar City News

“He was actively inhaling paint by spraying green spray paint into a bag and huffing it,” the investigating trooper wrote in the probable cause affidavit filed in support of the arrests.

The man, who reportedly had green paint on his hands, clothes, and face, appeared to be intoxicated, the statement added.

“After ignoring several commands to exit the vehicle the male finally exited after finishing his abuse of the inhalant and was taken into custody without incident,” the trooper wrote.

Some time later, when the pair were at the UHP offices in Cedar City for paperwork and further questioning, Wolfe allegedly attempted to grab the investigating trooper’s service weapon from its holster on his belt, according to the affidavit.

“While (I was) working on the booking paperwork, the female, (who) was handcuffed in front, approached me from behind, placed both hands on my service weapon and attempted to take it from me,” the trooper wrote. “I pushed her away and the male stood up (cuffed in front also) and they both began to advance towards me ignoring verbal commands to stop and get on the ground.”

Only after the trooper had punched the man in the face multiple times and had radioed for backup to arrive, did the suspects become compliant and lie face down on the ground, the affidavit states.

During their search of the vehicle, authorities reportedly found various power tools that appeared to have been stolen from Home Depot in Richfield, with the security tags still attached to the boxes. Small amounts of methamphetamine and drug paraphernalia were also found inside the car, according to the affidavit.

Wolfe and Snow were both booked into Iron County Jail on Thursday evening. A booking photo for Snow had not yet been posted as of Friday afternoon.

Wolfe faces one count of disarming a police officer, a first-degree felony, along with third-degree felony charges of retail theft and failure to stop at command of police. Additionally, she faces misdemeanor counts of assault against a police officer, reckless driving and possession of drugs and paraphernalia, She was also cited for speeding, an infraction.

Meanwhile, Snow, who reportedly has an extraditable warrant for burglary out of Columbus, Ohio, faces a felony charge of being a fugitive from justice, along with multiple other charges similar to those filed against Wolfe, including first-degree felony count of disarming a police officer, third-degree felony counts of retail theft and failure to stop at command of police and misdemeanor assault and drug possession counts.

This report is based on information provided by law enforcement and may not contain the full scope of findings. Persons arrested or charged are presumed innocent until found guilty in a court of law or as otherwise decided by a trier-of-fact.

Copyright St. George News, LLC, 2021, all rights reserved.

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