Neb. deputies taken Utah-Nevada fugitive into custody
Haystack arrest • Three days on the lam end when fugitive spotted.
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Sheriff's deputies in Dawes County, Nebraska closed in on and arrested a fugitive wanted on arrest warrants from several states, including Utah, Wednesday afternoon.

Sheriff Karl Dailey told The Salt Lake Tribune that 29-year-old Justin Pierce, also known as Justin Beck, was arrested just before 1 p.m. Mountain time. He was found hiding in a hay stack near the rural northwestern town of Chadron.

"We had some citizens spot him and call it in," Dailey said. "Our deputies in the field then were able to close a ring around him and caught him in the hay."

Dailey said Pierce, who was unarmed, did not fight deputies, but he "wasn't happy" about being located. "Let's just say he didn't readily surrender, but we were able to avoid what we call here the 'polyester dogpile.' "

Pierce was taken to a hospital to be treated for frostbite and exposure, and after that he will be booked into the Dawes County jail pending extradition proceedings.

Dailey said it appeared Elko County, Nev., had the most interest in Pierce. Indeed, Pierce is believed to have come from that area.

Specifics on what crimes Pierce may be wanted for in Utah were not immediately available. A search of Utah court records under that name did not reveal any active warrants.

Dailey's deputies had been hunting for Pierce since Monday, when he fled in his pickup truck after officers tried to serve arrest warrants on him — from Washington, Nevada and Utah — at his Crawford-area home. The pickup was later abandoned as Pierce fled into a heavily wooded area.

remims@sltrib.com