After allegedly posing as an undercover Price City Police Officer and carrying a gun into Castle Heights Elementary, a West Valley City man now faces felony and misdemeanor criminal informations associated with the January 25 incident.
Cody Rend Armstrong, 28, of West Valley City, was arrested by Price City Police on April 3 after being interviewed by Price Det. Ed Malmgren and allegedly admitting to both impersonating a police officer and carrying a firearm into the school. Armstrong was arrested for possession of a firearm by a restricted person, impersonating a police officer and unauthorized possession of a firearm on school property.
According to Castle Heights Principal Jan Cox, the incident began on Jan. 25 when Armstrong came to the school to pick up his girlfriend's children. Because the West Valley man was not listed on their emergency card, school officials contacted the children's mother to gain permission for him to take them. When officials tried to obtain the man's information for future pickups, he balked.
"He told my staff that he was an undercover Price City Police officer and that he would have to gain his 'CIs' permission in order to give out his phone number," said Cox, who had left the school for the district office after classes had let out for the day. "My staff immediately took issue with this explanation."
Cox reported that Armstrong was "ultra polite" while at the school and that he never threatened anyone or acted in an aggressive manner.
"When he turned to leave, a staff member saw his jacket come up in the back and noted what looked like a gun," said Cox. "At that point, we decided to contact law enforcement because his whole story just wasn't making sense."
Cox reported that she informed the district as soon as she learned of the incident. She additionally stated that the school was never placed on lockdown.
According to Price Police Capt. Bill Barnes, the case was investigated by Det. Malmgren, the school's DARE Officer and their contact. Based upon the children picked up, Malmgren discerned the suspect's identity and learned that he was a convicted felon. He was reportedly in the process of turning in his report and applying for a warrant when the suspect contacted Price Police.
"The suspect had found out that we were looking for him and agreed to come in for an interview," said Capt. Barnes. "As a convicted felon, he is not able to carry a gun. He was very cooperative and apologetic."
Armstrong was released on April 10 from the Carbon County Jail on bond after his bail was reduced from $10,000 to $3,000.