Man cited for driving on parade route after SLCPD officers refuse access twice

File Photo: Gephardt Daily/Patrick Benedict

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah, July 23, 2022 (Gephardt Daily) — A Salt Lake City man who asked officers if he could drive on the Days of 47 Parade route to get to his house, then twice defied officers’ orders not to, was removed from his vehicle and cited for filing to obey a traffic control device and for unlawfully driving left of center.

A statement issued by the Salt Lake City Police Department says suspect John Kotun, 42, was arrested. He has since been released.

“There were no injuries associated with this incident and no significant disruptions to the parade,” the Salt Lake City Police statement says.

This investigation started at approximately 10:15 a.m. Saturday at 100 East and 200 South minutes after Kotun approached officers on foot and asked if he could go around the road closure to get home.

“Hours earlier, officers secured the parade route and put in place a hard closure – meaning no outside vehicle traffic would be permitted along the parade route,” the SLCPD statement says. “The officers repeatedly told the driver he could not pass. To help the man get home, officers suggested he park his car nearby and walk to his residence.”

Kotun left in his car without incident, the statement says. Officers remained at the location.

“When the officers looked out, they saw the man attempting to drive around the road closure. The officers immediately contacted the driver for a second time and told him he could not access the parade route,” the SLCPD statement says. “The man left, again, without incident, and the officers continued to maintain a heightened awareness around their post.”

Shortly after turning the man around for a second time, the officer saw the man had successfully gotten through an opening where parade staff and parade equipment was set up. The man was driving slowly on the parade route.

“Our officers immediately ran over and started waiving down the driver as he remained traveling at slow speeds. SLCPD officers ordered the man to stop the car, but he began accelerating slowly. Due to the potential danger, officers opened the car door and successfully put the car in park and got the driver out without further incident.”

The driver got about a half-block (149 East 200 South) before being stopped and safely removed from the car. The driver continued to reiterate that his apartment was nearby, and he was trying to get home. Officers confirmed the driver’s identity and confirmed his residence was nearby.

Based on the preliminary investigation, while speaking to officers, the man acknowledged he should not have driven onto the parade route, the statement says. Officers cited and released Kotun, who faces one count of failing to obey a traffic control device and one count of unlawfully driving left of center.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here