SOUTH OGDEN — The so-called Mayan apocalypse didn’t happen Dec. 21, but Ryan Adams’ world came crashing down anyway when his pickup truck was stolen and wrecked, possibly dooming his small construction company.
“It’s just unbelievable,” Adams said. “It’s unreal that it would happen in South Ogden.”
Adams, 38, owner and sole employee of Adams Quality Construction, bought the 2002 Chevrolet Silverado about six months ago for $9,000 to haul his equipment trailer.
However, Adams only had liability insurance on the truck, which means he can’t receive a settlement to replace the vehicle because it was demolished after it was stolen.
Adams has five children and said, without the truck, his construction company, which specializes in framing, roof, door and window repairs, is at a standstill.
“I’m shut down. I can’t drive to place bids on jobs.”
Adams’ ordeal began around 12:20 p.m. Dec. 21, when he left his truck warming up in front of his condo at 1835 E. 5725 South in South Ogden.
“I came in briefly (after starting up the truck) for about 15 seconds, turned around and saw it backing up,” he said.
Adams ran up to the truck and tried to punch through the driver’s-side window just before the vehicle sped away. He immediately phoned 911 to report the theft and quickly organized a search party, made up of family and friends, to look for the truck.
Around 2:30 p.m., Adams’ friend, Chris Armstrong, of Washington Terrace, hit pay dirt. He followed the stolen truck south on Adams Avenue into the parking lot of Ogden Regional Medical Center.
“Everyone was else was looking for the truck in Layton,” said Armstrong, who was amazed to spot the vehicle. “It was perfect coincidence.”
The truck parked in the southwest end of the hospital parking lot but took off quickly as a police officer arrived, said Armstrong, who had called 911 about the vehicle.
Adams got on the phone with Armstrong, who provided blow-by-blow details of the brief police pursuit and the vehicle’s ensuing crash.
The truck, with two male occupants, sped off, turning onto Adams Avenue from the hospital parking lot and hitting a Nissan Versa, South Ogden police say.
The female driver of the Nissan and two child passengers received minor injuries in the crash.
“They (the suspects) could have easily killed that family,” Armstrong said.
A Weber County sheriff’s deputy pursuing the truck discontinued the chase because it was deemed unsafe.
The truck traveled north into the parking lot of Goldenwest Credit Union at the intersection of U.S. 89 and Adams Avenue, where it hit a tree and flipped upside down.
Adams arrived at the parking lot minutes after the crash. He ran up to the wreckage and expected to find the suspects dead inside, but, he said, “I looked, and no one was in there.”
The two suspects had crawled out of the truck and fled on foot.
One of the suspects, Cody Lee Bybee, 31, believed by police to be the driver, was apprehended a short distance away. The second suspect, Brayden Daniel Coles, 23, was caught a few hours later.
In an unusual twist, Bybee and Coles both have birthdays on Dec. 21.
“Karma is trying to tell them something,” said Weber County Sheriff Chief Deputy Klint Anderson.
Bybee was booked into Weber County Jail for a red light violation, unlawful use and possession of a credit card, a right-of-way stop/yield sign violation, evading, burglary, receiving or transporting a stolen motor vehicle, interfering with an arrest and failure to appear.
Bybee’s bond has been set at $5,000
Coles was booked into jail for burglary, parole violation, receiving or transporting a stolen motor vehicle, and evading. He was being held without bond.
Both men are also suspects in a Dec. 21 burglary in Uintah, Anderson said.
Angela Beatty, who is Adams’ sister, hopes Bybee and Coles are severely punished for the truck theft.
“You reap what you sow,” she said. “I hope they get what they have coming.”
Adams’ family has set up a fund to help him raise money to buy another truck. Contributions can be made to the Derrick and Angela Beatty Donation Recovery fund at any Goldenwest Credit Union.