A snake-sparked fire claimed the life of the serpent and caused $2,000 in damage to an Orem home. Firefighters extinguished the Monday blaze before it destroyed the home on the 900 North block of 100 West. It is believed the homeowner's pet boa constrictor pulled down a lamp above its cage, igniting combustible material inside the cage. The people in the home escaped without injury.
Students injured when bus hits lamppost
About 20 high school and junior high students were injured Monday when their school bus crashed into a lamppost as it arrived at Roy High School. The driver didn't see the lamppost, and there was no evidence of driver negligence, said Roy police Chief Greg Whinham. Nine students suffered injuries, including a broken nose and chipped teeth, Whinham said. Other students complained of discomfort, bruises or stiffness, he said.
Attempted morphine theft brings house arrest
A man who masqueraded as a doctor to steal morphine from Cottonwood Hospital has been sentenced to probation and 60 days of home confinement. Frank Margetts Thayne, 46, pleaded guilty in 3rd District Court to class A misdemeanor counts of attempting to acquire a controlled substance by prescription alteration and attempted possession of a controlled substance. On Jan. 30, 2003, Thayne tricked a nurse into giving him a mask, gloves and gown, according to charging documents. Thayne then identified himself as "Dr. Payne," to another nurse, and ordered a third nurse to give him 50 milligrams of morphine. As part of his sentence, Thayne must obtain a mental health evaluation and attend three 12-step meetings a week.
Man sentenced in stabbing of friend
Robert Bibbs Hughes, 43, who stabbed a man during an argument at the victim's Salt Lake City home last year, has been sentenced to prison for up to five years. Hughes was charged in 3rd District Court with attempted murder, but pleaded guilty to third-degree felony counts of aggravated assault and attempted burglary. On Jan. 9, 2004, Hughes was partying with Michael Bird when an argument erupted and Hughes stabbed Bird in the neck with a knife, according to charging documents.
Former firefighter charged in arson case
A former volunteer Kamas firefighter has been charged with second-degree felony arson after police say he teamed up with a juvenile to set a house on fire so he could put it out. On Tuesday, a 3rd District judge appointed a public defender to represent Cody Sargent, 19, of Kamas, and a roll call in the case was scheduled for Jan. 25. According to Kamas Police Chief Errik Ovard, Sargent dropped off the juvenile at a house being used for storage. The teenager, who has been charged in juvenile court, then started the fire, Ovard said. An insurance company estimated the damage at $22,000, Ovard said. Nobody was injured.
Motor vehicle raid turns up counterfeit bills
For the second time in two days, the state Motor Vehicle Enforcement Division discovered several counterfeit bills as part of a stolen-vehicle investigation. The division served a warrant Tuesday at a home in Murray to find a VIN for a stolen trailer or any other stolen vehicle the suspect may have had, said Kent Jorgensen, division director. Investigators found less than $500 worth of counterfeit 00 and $50 bills and cocaine, Jorgensen said. On Monday, the division searched a home in Riverton for a separate case and discovered 16 phony $20 bills as well as some fake 0, $5, $2 and bills, said Sgt. Curtis Stoddard. The division was searching for Brad Wall, 47, in connection with the bills found in Riverton, Jorgensen said. Those with information are asked to call the division's tip line at 297-2694.