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Utah man sentenced to prison for shooting at sheriff’s deputy

First Published      Last Updated Sep 25 2013 09:09 am

A man accused of shooting at a Uintah County sheriff's deputy in 2012 was sentenced Tuesday to up to 15 years in prison.

Dallas A. Rowley, 68, of Vernal, had pleaded guilty to second-degree felony attempted homicide and third-degree felony evading a police officer for the March 8, 2012 shooting.

On Tuesday, he was sentenced to one to 15 years in prison for the second-degree felony, and zero to five years on the second-degree felony, according to the Vernal Express newspaper. A judge ruled the sentences could be served concurrently.

Rowley was originally charged in 8th District Court with one count of attempted murder, a first-degree felony, and failing to respond to an officer's signal, a third-degree felony.

According to police and a probable cause affidavit filed in court, Deputy Mike Lourenco was investigating a report of a suspicious vehicle near Red Wash Road and Highway 45 on the night of March 8, 2012, when he pulled over Rowley's white Chevrolet Suburban.

While talking to Rowley, the deputy smelled alcohol on Rowley's breath and noticed a handgun within the man's reach. When the deputy asked Rowley to step outside the car for a sobriety test, he instead drove off and Lourenco followed.

Lourenco later drove up behind Rowley's vehicle and saw a rifle pointed at him from the driver's window, court documents state. The deputy "laid over in his seat," as Rowley fired at least 10 times.

"Three bullet holes are in the windshield in a pattern that would have hit Deputy Lourenco in the chest, neck or head if he had remained in an upright, seated position," according to the affidavit.

Police searched for Rowley for two days before finding him near the White River in the southern part of Uintah County.

No motive for shooting has ever been disclosed publicly.


Twitter: @jm_miller