Utah police identify mystery jail inmate

SALT LAKE CITY Wed Jul 27, 2011 9:48am EDT

Philip Todd Beavers, who sat in a jail under the name ''John Doe'' for over three weeks because he would not reveal his true identity, in a photo courtesy of the Utah County Sheriff's Office. REUTERS/Handout

Philip Todd Beavers, who sat in a jail under the name ''John Doe'' for over three weeks because he would not reveal his true identity, in a photo courtesy of the Utah County Sheriff's Office.

Credit: Reuters/Handout

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SALT LAKE CITY (Reuters) - Police in Utah identified a mystery man on Tuesday who was arrested on minor charges and sat in a jail under the name "John Doe" for over three weeks because he would not reveal his true identity.

A call from a family member resulted in the identification of Philip Todd Beavers, 60, from Farmington, New Mexico, Utah County sheriff's spokesman Lieutenant Dennis Harris said.

The family member identified Beavers, who left his home town on June 24, after seeing the photo Utah police distributed to the media in an attempt to identify their mystery man.

Beavers, who will not say why he refused to identify himself, had lost his job and taken a bus to Salt Lake City, Harris said.

He was arrested on July 1 by police in Provo, about 40 miles south of Salt Lake City, after he was accused of trespassing in a parking garage.

In addition to trespassing, he was also charged with failure to give information to a police officer and interfering with an investigation, all misdemeanor counts.

Beavers has maintained a pleasant demeanor while behind bars but his refusal to reveal his name prevented his release from the Utah County jail, Harris said, and sheriff's deputies spent hours trying to identify him.

The man acknowledged his identity to police after they confronted him with his name, Harris said.

Beavers' family is assisting authorities in arranging his release on $1,200 bail, in advance of a court hearing on the misdemeanor charges, Harris said.

(Writing by Alex Dobuzinskis: Editing by Cynthia Johnston)

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Comments (2)
JohnM314159 wrote:
Hmmm.

“In addition to trespassing, he was also charged with failure to give information to a police officer…”

What about the right to remain silent? How can you be charged with failure to speak if you also have the right to remain silent? Something’s fishy here.

Jul 28, 2011 1:29pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
MidwestVoice wrote:
Anyone consider that the ‘trespass’ in a parking deck may have been because he was looking for a relatively sheltered safe place to spend the night? If he lost his job and thought somehow going to SLC would help, it seems likely the trespass was related to his unemployment – and maybe since they were being relatively nice, fed him, and housed him while in jail (not prison, just local jail) he wasn’t in a rush to give his name and be released. If they told him – or he overheard – that they couldnt release him until his identity was confirmed, he might have decided to stay until they figured it out.

Aug 01, 2011 7:02pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
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