WASHINGTON CITY — A traffic offense triggered a search of a vehicle that led to the arrest of a Hurricane driver when narcotics were allegedly found in the vehicle, drugs that were within reach of the two small children, authorities say.
On Monday, a traffic officer patrolling Telegraph Street in observed a white passenger car turn from 300 East to head south on Telegraph while a crossing guard was in the crosswalk and three children were crossing the street. The officer activated his emergency lights and pulled the vehicle over near the corner of Palo Verde and Telegraph for a crosswalk violation, according to a police statement filed in support of the arrest.
During the stop, the driver, later identified as 31-year-old McKayla Quinn Spilsbury of Hurricane, told the officer she had no license nor did she have a photo ID with her, nor was she able to provide a copy of the registration or insurance after she could not find it in the vehicle. The reports says she then explained that her aunt was the legal owner of the car.
The officer also noted there were two children in the car, ages 8 and 10, one who was sitting in the front seat while the other child was sitting in the backseat directly behind the driver.
During a records check, the officer found no valid driver’s license for the driver, and then noted she had a skeleton license that was denied by the state, as well as two active warrants issued for the woman’s arrest – both of which involved charges related to controlled substances.
When backup arrived, the driver was placed under arrest on the warrants, while a caregiver was contacted and responded to the scene to retrieve the children.
The officer then asked Spilsbury if there was anything in the vehicle that could “place the two children in danger,” to which she allegedly stated there was not.
A K-9 officer arrived and was deployed to conduct an exterior sniff around the car. After the animal indicated to the possible presence of narcotics, the car was searched.
According to the report, officers found inside the center console a small plastic baggie containing a black tar-like substance consistent with heroin, and in an area under the armrest, they recovered a second baggie containing a crushed crystal-like substance that appeared to be methamphetamine.
As the search continued, officers also found another plastic baggie containing a crushed brown substance, as well as several packs of Suboxone, burned tin foil and several syringes.
All of the items “were within easy reach” of the children, the officer wrote in the report, adding that “there was nothing preventing them (the children) from coming into contact with these dangerous items inside the vehicle.”
The driver was then transported to Purgatory Correctional Facility facing felony possession of a controlled substance and causing or permitting a child to be exposed to a controlled substance charges, as well as for driving on a suspended license and other misdemeanor drug offenses.
On Tuesday, the charges were filed by the Washington County Attorney’s Office, and after reviewing the case another felony possession charge was added.
She was also booked on the two outstanding warrants issued out of 5th District Court, one of which was issued in a case involving controlled substances that were brought into a correctional facility. The second warrant was issued after Spilsbury was arrested during a traffic stop on drug charges in June of last year.
Following Monday’s arrest, the suspect remains in custody and is scheduled to make an initial appearance in 5th District Court on Friday.
Ed. Note: A new Utah law generally prohibits the release of arrest booking photos until after a conviction is obtained.
This report is based on statements from court records, police or other responders 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, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2021, all rights reserved.