Police arrest wanted Utah fugitive in Mesquite on drug and forgery charges

Stock image | St. George News

MESQUITE, Nev. — A man wanted on felony charges in Utah was apprehended by police in Mesquite, Nevada, last week.

James Phillips booking photo, posted in Clark County, Nev., Dec. 22, 2021 | Photo courtesy of the Mesquite Police Department, St. George News

On Dec. 22, Mesquite Police Department detectives received information from Utah Parole and Probation about 35-year-old James Buice Phillips, of South Salt Lake City, who had an active felony parole violation arrest warrant and was possibly staying in Mesquite.

Detectives located the man at a hotel, and while taking him into custody, they allegedly found evidence of criminal activity inside his room.

“Detectives obtained and executed a search warrant on the hotel room and recovered methamphetamine, heroin and evidence of a check forgery lab,” Mesquite Police said in a news release. “Nearly 90 checks had been forged and written out to the male, ready for deposit. The male was also in possession of a stolen moving van that was parked near the hotel room.”

Phillips was charged with 58 felony counts of forgery, 27 felony counts of possession with intent to utter fictitious note, seven felony counts of attempt to possess identifying information of another, felony possession of heroin, felony possession of methamphetamine, felony possession of a forgery lab, felony possession of a stolen vehicle and fugitive from justice from another state.

Due to the felony charges, Phillips was transported to jail at the Clark County Detention Center in Las Vegas.

“Our strong working relationship with other law enforcement agencies helps us combat crime that comes to Mesquite through interstate travel,” Mesquite Police Chief MaQuade Chesley said. “I am grateful our detectives worked earnestly to locate and arrest this wanted criminal before he could victimize the businesses and citizens of Mesquite.”

This report is based on statements from court records, police or other responders and may not contain the full scope of findings. Persons arrested or charged are presumed innocent until found guilty in a court of law or as otherwise decided by a trier-of-fact.

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