UTAH COUNTY, Utah, Jan. 18, 2021 (Gephardt Daily) — A man impersonating a police officer has been arrested after he stole a doughnut from a Utah County 7-Eleven.
A probable cause statement from Utah County said Daniel Mark Wright, 47, was arrested Sunday morning and is facing charges of:
- Receive or transfer a stolen vehicle, a second-degree felony
- Theft, a third-degree felony
- Impersonation of officer, a class B misdemeanor
The arresting officer was in the parking lot of 7-Eleven at 47 S. 850 East in Lehi, Sunday.
“I was approached by a 7-Eleven employee who gave me information about a suspicious person who entered his store previously that morning wearing a sheriff’s deputy jacket,” the statement said. “The employee found it to be suspicious and did not believe the male to be a law enforcement officer. The male, later identified as Daniel Wright, was also suspected of theft at the 7-Eleven.”
The store manager later reported that Wright had stolen a doughnut from the store. When later asked about the item, Wright said that he paid for it, which the store manager disputed. A receipt from 7-Eleven later found at the motel room Wright was staying at did not show a purchase of a doughnut. Due to Wright’s prior theft convictions, the theft charge is a third-degree felony.
The clerk was able to observe Wright get into a white Ford truck and drive towards the Best Western hotel nearby.
“I later observed a white Ford truck matching the description given parked at the Best Western in Lehi,” the statement said. “I ran a records check and found that the plate returned on a vehicle not matching the truck. I confirmed this with a records check of the VIN, which showed that the vehicle was listed as stolen.”
Surveillance video from the 7-Eleven allegedly shows Wright exit the store and enter the same vehicle that was stolen. A female passenger can also be observed in the vehicle.
The video surveillance shows Wright to be wearing a green Salt Lake County Sheriff’s Office deputy jacket with Salt Lake County Sheriff shoulder patches and an embroidered badge.
Officers made contact with Wright at the Best Western. While the suspect’s door was open, the arresting officer observed the green Salt Lake County Sheriff’s Office jacket hanging in the entryway closet. Wright was taken into custody. After being read his Miranda rights, he admitted to being at the 7-Eleven but when asked about the stolen vehicle, would not answer questions.
Officials found that Wright, the woman he was with, and another man, Adalberto Ozeta, who was arrested after fleeing from police Saturday night, are allegedly “involved in extensive criminal activity regarding vehicle burglary and vehicle theft among other things and are currently being investigated under RICO,” the statement said. RICO stands for Racketeering Influenced and Corrupt Organizations, and was passed by Congress with the declared purpose of seeking to eradicate organized crime in the U.S. The woman that was with Wright calls Ozeta her brother, though they are not related by blood.
Wright was transported to Utah County Jail, where he is being held without bail.