Sanpete County man who was shot by Utah trooper sent to prison
A Sanpete County man who was shot by police after a confrontation last September was sent to prison for crimes related to the shooting.
David Searle, 44, was originally charged in Manti's 6th District Court with three second-degree felony counts of theft, third-degree felony aggravated assault, and two third-degree felony counts of possession of a firearm by a restricted person.
He was shot by a Utah Highway Patrol trooper on Sept. 25 during an investigation of a stolen truck, according to court documents.
In February, Searle took a plea deal and pleaded guilty to third-degree felony joyriding, one count of third-degree felony theft and one count of second-degree felony use of a firearm by restricted person. He also pleaded no contest to a charge of third-degree felony assault of a police officer.
On Wednesday, a judge sentenced the man to three zero-to-five-year prison terms for the third-degree felonies, and one-to-15 years in prison for the use of a firearm. The judge ordered the sentences to run concurrently, and also ordered that Searle obtain a mental-health and substance-abuse evaluation and receive any recommended treatment.
A 2001 pickup was reported stolen earlier that September day, according to police, and the owner had informed police that a pistol and rifle were inside the truck.
At about 7 a.m. that day, police found the vehicle, with Searle inside, about 2 miles from Spring City. UHP and Ephraim police surrounded the vehicle, but when they went to apprehend the man, he began driving toward a UHP trooper.
The trooper fired two rounds at the truck, and fragmented pieces of one round hit Searle in the arm, according to police.