Alleged porch pirate, car thief leads Summit Co. deputies on chase, found hiding in a family’s closet, SCSO says

File photo: Gephardt Daily

SUMMIT COUNTY, Utah, March 18, 2022 (Gephardt Daily) — A suspected porch pirate is in custody after leading Summit County Sheriff’s deputies on a chase early Friday morning.

According to a statement by the Summit County Sheriff’s Office, Anthony Ortega, 23, of Preston, Idaho, was arrested after being pursued through Kimball Junction and Jeremy Ranch.

It all began about 2:25 a.m. when the Summit County Sheriff’s Office received a call from a Summit Park area from a man who said someone had just stolen a package from his front porch.

The alleged crime had been recorded on the resident’s porch camera and he provided a suspect description.

A deputy in the area spotted the suspect driving a 2013 Lexus sedan on Kilby Road. The vehicle was listed as stolen by the Murray Police Department, the SCSO said.

“The driver, Anthony Ortega, did not stop for the deputy. The deputy pursued Ortega onto I-80 eastbound. Ortega exited at Kimball Junction, made a U-turn, and got back onto I-80 westbound, but not before deputies successfully deployed tire spikes on the suspect vehicle,” the SCSO statement said.

Ortega pulled off at the Jeremy Ranch exit and parked the stolen Lexus on Homestead Road before running into the neighborhood.

Deputies using a Summit County Sheriff K-9 tracked Ortega, who they say entered a residence on Homestead Road through an unlocked rear door.

“A family was asleep inside the residence when Ortega entered,” the sheriff’s office said. “Deputies were minutes behind Ortega and quickly searched the residence at the request of the homeowner. Ortega was found hiding in a utility closet and was taken into custody.”

Ortega has been booked into the Summit County Jail on numerous felony charges and 14 arrest warrants.

Charges include:

  • Possession of stolen vehicle, a second-degree felony
  • Evading, a third-degree felony
  • Reckless driving, class B misdemeanor
  • Failure to stop at command of police, a class A misdemeanor
  • Aggravated burglary, a first-degree felony
  • Possession of dangerous weapon by restricted person, a third-degree felony


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