Suspect facing 27 felony charges after traffic stop in St. George

St. George Police car. Photo: sgcity.org

ST. GEORGE, Utah, Aug. 22, 2021 (Gephardt Daily) — A 31-year-old man stopped by a St. George Police officer who suspected the man was driving under the influence is now charged with that and two other misdemeanors, plus 27 felonies.

Arturo Tarula Arellano, 31, was stopped Wednesday night after the officer observed him on Westridge Drive weaving in and out of his traffic lane, the suspect’s probable cause statement says. The SGPD officer conducted a traffic stop, and Arellano pulled into a gas station.

The officer observed a glass pipe with a white, crystal-like substance in view near the car’s gear shift, the officer’s statement says. Arellano admitted it was a meth pipe, and emptied his pockets to reveal tin foil containing what appeared to be heroin, the officer wrote in the affidavit.

Arellano showed signs of impairment, and failed a sobriety test, his probable cause statement says. He was arrested for DUI.

The officer’s statement says a search Arellano’s vehicle turned up additional items including: two baggies containing a crystal-like substance believed to be meth, a BB gun molded and stamped as a Glock 9mm, four credit cards belonging to other people, 21 checks belonging to other people, a label maker that could be used to cover names on checks and replace them with other names.

Arellano has been charged on suspicion of:

  • Two counts of possession of a controlled substance schedule I/II/analog, a third-degree felony
  • Four counts of unlawful acquisition/possession/transfer financial card, a third-degree felony
  • 10 counts of forgery, a third-degree felony
  • 10 counts of possession of a forgery/writing device, a third-degree felony
  • Possession of another’s identity documents, less than 100 individuals, a third-degree felony
  • Driving under the influence of alcohol/drugs, a class B misdemeanor
  • Use or possession of drug paraphernalia, a class B misdemeanor
  • Unlawful possession/purchase/transfer of a dangerous weapon, a class A misdemeanor

Arellano is being held without bail in Washington County’s jail.

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