This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2016, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.
A Utah County sheriff's office deputy fatally shot a man at the Lakeshore area west of Spanish Fork on Saturday after he allegedly charged the officer with a knife.
Sheriff's Sgt. Spencer Cannon said that just before noon, the deputy had been looking for 33-year-old Mark Daniel Bess who was wanted on drug-related felony and misdemeanor warrants and a traffic-related warrant when he learned Bess had been spotted near 4500 South and 3200 West, where he had recently lived.
Cannon said Bess fled on foot, and the officer encountered him behind a barn at another residence.
The deputy stopped about 50 feet away from Bess, who produced a knife, Cannon said.
The officer told Bess several times to drop the knife and get on the ground, but instead he charged the deputy, who fired at least two shots when the suspect was 10 to 15 feet away, according to Cannon.
One shot struck Bess in the head and another in the body. Deputies and bystanders performed CPR on Bess until a helicopter arrived to fly him to Utah Valley Regional Medical Center in Provo by medical helicopter.
Cannon said Bess initially was in extremely critical condition, but died shortly before 1 p.m.
The deputy was not hurt.
According to a news release from the Utah County Sheriff's Office, Bess had previously been booked into the Utah County Jail 22 different times on crimes ranging from drugs, assault, theft and domestic violence to probation violations and traffic-related charges.
Utah court records show that Bess has a criminal record going back to 2003.
Recently he was wanted on a $10,000 warrant for failing to appear in 3rd District Court in February in a third-degree felony heroin possession case. A Utah Transit Authority police officer saw Bess doing a drug deal near 300 S. 500 West in Salt Lake City last December, charges state. When confronted by the officer, Bess allegedly handed over three black balloons allegedly containing heroin.
Bess also was wanted on a $5,000 warrant in a case where police allegedly caught him holding a syringe containing heroin and pulling up his sleeve while sitting on the sidewalk near 200 S. 500 West in February.
Saturday's episode is at least the third this year in which a police officer has shot and killed someone, according to a Tribune accounting.
Corey Lee Henderson, 31, was killed Jan. 17 by Unified Police officers in Holladay after Henderson shot and killed Officer Doug Barney, 44. Henderson, a parole fugitive, shot Barney while trying to flee a traffic crash, and then died in a subsequent firefight with other UPD officers.
On Feb. 19, Justin Patrick Moses, 35, was killed by an Ogden officer responding to a domestic violence call, who found Moses stabbing a woman.