BY JENNIFFER WARDELL
LAYTON - After a long chase around the mall, Layton police have taken into custody a 17-year-old male who is a suspect in several local crimes.
Officers are questioning the teen, who is a suspect in a theft and brandishing incident in Clearfield. Lt. Shawn Horton, public information officer with the Layton Police Department, said that they are investigating other incidents as well.
“We believe he’s been committing crimes in neighboring jurisdictions,” said Horton.
The call initially came in around 11 a.m. on Thursday as a “man down” call. A passerby had seen a young man lying down and was concerned for his health. When an officer responded, they spoke to three young men who said there was no trouble. When a second officer arrived, one of the teens ran away on foot.
The second police officer gave chase, but lost the suspect. Later, the police received a second call from a man saying that he’d seen someone enter his trailer. When the man went outside to confront him, the youth assaulted the man and took his cell phone.
“He didn’t keep it,” said Horton. “We believe he took it so the man couldn’t call us.”
The suspect was spotted just over an hour later near restaurants located by Layton Hills Mall. He was later tracked to the mall, and a store owner called to report that a young man who seemed “out of breath” had just bought a t-shirt and hat. His old clothes, which matched those from earlier descriptions of the suspect, were left in the dressing room. He was intermittently shirtless and wearing shirts as cops chased him through the mall.
Police gave up the chase several times, but the boy resurfaced and they started up again. Police scanner traffic was busy with the incident throughout the afternoon.
Mall security later located the suspect in the changing room of another clothing store at the mall, attempting to change his clothes again. He was then arrested.
Horton said that Layton police intend to charge the suspect with either assault or robbery over the phone incident.