Deputy honored for heroic arrest

Uinta County Sheriff’s Deputy Jarrod Asay looks at the Medal of Valor he received during the county commission meeting on Sept. 20, as Sheriff Doug Matthews, who presented the award, looks on. Asay was injured when a man driving the wrong way on Interstate 80 hit Asay’s vehicle head on, but Asay was still able to arrest the man, a felon, who allegedly had been shooting at vehicles in Park City prior to a high-speed chase. (HERALD PHOTO/Kayne Pyatt)

EVANSTON — A large crowd gathered in the commission chambers for the second regular meeting of the Uinta County Commission last month. The meeting was held on Monday, Sept. 20, and began with the commission approving two new additions to the agenda.

The first addition was Sheriff Doug Matthews, who addressed the commission and the audience.   

“I am here today to present Jarrod Asay with the Medal of Valor. You will recall that on June 28, 2020, Asay suffered medical issues when a suspect he was pursuing crashed his vehicle into Asay’s patrol vehicle. Even though he was hurt, Jarrod was able to exit his car and eventually arrest the suspect. We wanted to give him the medal in 2020; however, due to COVID, we could not get the medal until now,” Sheriff Matthews said.

Matthews summarized a history of the incident explaining how the suspect had been allegedly shooting at vehicles in Park City and Asay had intercepted him at milepost 32 on Interstate 80. The suspect was driving a minivan with two children in it. After the suspect crashed into Asay’s vehicle, he exited his van and threw his pistol at Asay, who had managed to get out of his patrol car.

Asay was alone during this altercation and was seriously injured. Matthews said the suspect was wanted for murder in Utah and was a known felon carrying a gun. He is currently in the Uinta County jail awaiting trial.

Asay came to the podium to accept the award amid loud applause from all in the chambers. Commissioners congratulated him and thanked him for his courage and dedication. 

“Moments like this overshadow the bad ones,” Asay said, with tears in his eyes. “Thank you.”

Asay received a standing ovation and then he, his family and fellow law enforcement officers continued their celebration outside the room while the commission continued with business.

Benjamin Kemp and Ted Kimball with Fraughton Meat Company asked the commission for a letter addressed to the Wyoming Legislature in support of a bill allowing their wildlife-meat processing business to repurpose their rendering waste into dog treat products.

“We currently operate our wildlife -rendering business from September through November and would like to expand to a year-round operation by making wildlife dog food products. We now have 12 employees and could increase that 100% by expanding our processing operation,” Kemp told the commission. 

Kemp said by increasing their operation to year-round, they project a contribution of over $100,000 to the county in retail sales tax. Kemp said local state Rep. Robert Wharff is championing their effort and they just needed the county to support their request.

When Commissioner Brent Hatch asked if they had any concern about chronic wasting disease, Kemp said he is a medical doctor and they had never seen any evidence of CWD in their products. Kemp said the Wyoming Game and Fish Department already requires the products to be completely separated from the brain and offal to guarantee safety. He said they want a bill to be passed permitting byproducts to be made into dog food in order to protect their investment in expanding their business.

The commission voted unanimously to provide Fraughton Meat Company with a letter of support to the Wyoming Legislature.

Next on the agenda was the approval of the BT Marketing subdivision and related map amendment. County Planner Kent Williams and Wasatch Engineering’s Fred Coles testified that everything was in good order and planning and zoning had approved the subdivision, which is located close to Mountain View Elementary. The commission unanimously approved the subdivision and the map amendment.

Uinta County Human Services Coordinator Rebecca Eastman, who had been added to the agenda, then asked the commission to sign the letter of acceptance for the CSBG (Community Services Block Grant), a federal grant of $119,868, to be distributed to various human service agencies, including the Evanston Youth Club, Disability:IN Uinta County, the Sexual Assault and Family Violence (SAFV) Task Force and to the Human Services discretionary fund for emergencies. The commission gave chair Eric South approval to sign the letter of acceptance for the grant.

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