After being released from Salt Lake County Jail under suspicion of stealing garage doors and garage door openers, a transient man was arrested once again for similar activity in Eagle Mountain and Vineyard.
Officers reportedly observed 35-year-old Justin Thomas Strasburg of Eagle Mountain offering garage door and garage door opener installations and repairs, according to the probable cause statement filed in support of the arrest.
Authorities attempted to set up a meeting to purchase the products from him, and on Tuesday, Strasburg agreed to a meeting and to install a garage door in Eagle Mountain.
Strasburg allegedly said he purchased the garage door and was out of money so he needed to install it that day, agreeing to meet what he believed to be a customer at the address that was given.
An officer on scene observed Strasburg arrive at the given address in a U-Haul truck before he messaged that he was there and the address did not exist, according to arrest documents.
The officer pulled his patrol vehicle behind the U-Haul with his lights on and approached the truck on the driver’s side, observing that Strasburg was the only occupant in the vehicle. He then advised Strasburg that they wanted to speak with him about what had occurred in Herriman a short time earlier.
Strasburg allegedly agreed to speak with police but asked to do so over the phone or at the police station at a later date, but according to the probable cause affidavit, the officer on scene advised him that he was not free to leave at that time.
Afraid that Strasburg was about to the flee the scene, the officer opened the driver’s side door and asked him to step out of the vehicle. Strasburg then allegedly started the vehicle and put it into drive before speeding away.
When Strasburg had started the vehicle, the officer had unholstered his weapon and pointed it at the defendant, commanding him to stop. When he realized Strasburg was not going to comply, the officer stepped away from the vehicle to avoid being hit by the back part of the box truck, according to arrest documents.
While Strasburg continued east, the officer proceeded to an intersection northwest of where the initial stop was made, knowing the street Strasburg was driving on would circle back.
Strasburg allegedly passed the officer at a high rate of speed before the officer began to pursue the U-Haul truck with his lights still activated. The officer observed Strasburg get on to state Route 73 with a Lehi police vehicle proceeding after him.
Dispatch was advised to contact Lehi officials to make them aware of the situation. When the original officer pulled onto state Route 73, he observed the Lehi police vehicle turn its lights on, but the truck still didn’t stop.
Lehi officers continued to pursue Strasburg, at speeds of over 85 mph in a 55 mph limit area, as the Eagle Mountain officer pulled to the side of the road and switched his emergency lights off. The pursuit continued into Saratoga Springs, and officers for the city attempted to set up spikes to stop the vehicle but were unsuccessful, according to the probable cause statement.
A detective with the Saratoga Springs Police Department observed Strasburg turn into a neighborhood and the truck was immediately surrounded by officials before Strasburg exited the U-Haul and fled on foot.
Strasburg was later located and taken into custody while the vehicle was state tax impounded and inventoried.
According to arrest documents, Strasburg was transported to Eagle Mountain where he was read his Miranda rights and agreed to speak with authorities. Strasburg said he was the suspect in eight separate incidents where garage doors, garage door openers, motors and other accessories were reported missing in Eagle Mountain and Vineyard.
Strasburg also allegedly admitted to stealing the garage door he was planning on installing in West Valley City.
During a search of his person, authorities discovered a small piece of white plastic in his wallet that contained a brown substance. Strasburg allegedly told police the substance was heroin and informed officials he had used heroin earlier in the day, according to the probable cause affidavit.
Strasburg was booked into the Utah County Jail on $56,280 bail under the suspicion of third degree felony theft of over $1,500 with two prior convictions, third degree felony possession of a controlled substance, third degree felony failure to respond to officers’ signal to stop, and third degree felony failure to stop at command of law enforcement.
Officials also petitioned to have Strasburg charged with a class B misdemeanor charge of reckless driving as well as issuing citations for failure to operate within a single lane, speeding and failure to obey traffic control devices.