A West Jordan man faces charged after he reportedly ran over a store clerk who was trying to stop him from shoplifting.
Kelly Vaughn Burge, 23, was charged in 3rd District Court with attempted murder and aggravated robbery, both first-degree felonies; and obstructing justice, a second-degree felony.
On Dec. 21, West Jordan police were called to Smokey’s Discount Cigarettes at 1597 W. 9000 South and found the injured clerk lying face down in the parking lot. The victim told police that when he confronted a shoplifter as he tried to drive away, he was “run over several times.”
Witnesses told police they heard “screaming and screeching tires” and saw a red car run over the clerk two or three times.
The clerk was taken to Intermountain Medical Center; his pelvis was crushed; his bladder was ruptured and all of his ribs were either fractured or broken, according to police.
According to charging documents, surveillance video from inside Smokey’s Cigarettes showed Burge take items from the store counter and run while the clerk’s back was turned. The clerk then chased Burge into the parking lot. Additional surveillance showed Burge run over the clerk, back up over him, and then run over him again.
Burge admitted he stole from the store and fled, according to police, and realized the clerk was right behind him when he got to his car. Burge told police the clerk was “grabbing and punching him and grabbing … the steering wheel” as he started to drive away, and went on to say he “intended to run over him.” Burge said he then put the car in reverse and backed over the clerk; then put the car in drive and drove over him again.
According to court documents, Burge told police he disposed of the clothes he was wearing at the time.
Police released information and photos from the surveillance camera to the public, and multiple witnesses identified Burge. He was arrested on Dec. 25 by West Valley City police after an unrelated robbery; Burge was driving a car that matched the one that drove over the clerk.
Burge is being held without bail in the Salt Lake County jail.