KDXU Sunrise Stories: Volume 120


Statewide News – 12/28/23

Partner of Viral Utah Vlogger Pleads Guilty to Child Abuse

Jodi Hildebrandt, the business partner of viral Utah vlogger Ruby Franke, has pleaded guilty to four counts of aggravated child abuse.

Hildebrandt was originally charged with six counts of child abuse, but due to her accepting a plea deal, two of the charges were dropped.

Hildebrandt and Franke were both arrested following the discovery of one of Franke’s children who had escaped from Hildebrandt’s home in Ivins with signs of malnourishment and had pieces of duct tape attached to their wrists and ankles. We have more articles covering the Franke case if you’d like to learn more.

Utah Highway Patrol Increases Trooper Activity Near New Year’s

Utah Highway Patrol troopers across the state of Utah are preparing for a busy New Year’s weekend by increasing their presence on the busy roadways of the beehive state.

A spokesperson for the Utah Highway Patrol encouraged residents to prepare a designated driver if they’re planning on drinking during the holiday weekend.

30 people were arrested for DUI-related charges over the Christmas weekend, and more than 130 crashes were reported across Utah during the same period.

Gas Prices May Increase in Utah Soon

According to a new report from AAA, the national average for a gallon of unleaded fuel has increased for the first time since September.

The national average increased by six cents since December 21, but Utah has yet to see any sort of change.

The current average price in Washington County is set at about $3.20 per gallon, which is five cents cheaper than the average on December 21.

We’ll be sure to provide updates on any sort of price increase in Utah going into 2024.

Southern Utah/St. George News – 12/28/23

Southern Utah Authorities Warn of Phone Scam

Authorities across Southern Utah are warning residents of a phone call scam making the rounds across Washington County.

The St. George Police Department released a statement on their Facebook page saying the scammer coaxes residents into paying ticket fines over the phone as if they are members of the police.

The SGPD condemned this action and said they would never call a resident and ask for such sensitive information over the phone.

We have more details in our full article, including tips to avoid getting scammed by this new wave of phone scams.

Cedar Breaks Opens New Contact Center

Cedar Breaks National Monument is opening a new visitor contact station on December 29. The new station at North View Overview will be staffed with rangers on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays from 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Admission is $10 per person and includes free access to snowshoe rentals. The fee is waived for Interagency or America the Beautiful passes for people traveling in the same vehicle.

Guided snowshoe tours for the whole family will be available every Friday, Saturday, and Sunday at 9:30 a.m., 11:30 a.m., and 2 p.m. starting on December 29.

Free Christmas Tree Disposal for Southern Utah Residents

Workers of Washington and Iron Counties are helping residents get rid of their natural Christmas trees.

Folks living in Washington County can leave their tree out on the curb along with the rest of their trash, and the sanitation workers will collect the tree along with the usual trash pickup. You can also drop your tree off at the reuse plant located at 575 East Brigham Road.

Residents in Iron County can drop their trees off at four different locations in Cedar City including Coal Creek Road and Main Street, Wedgewood Lane and Canyon Center Drive, 100 East and Center Street, and the Cedar City Aquatic Center.

Drop-offs will be accepted until January 17 for both Washington and Iron Counties.


Fun fact about Stockton Myers, the writer of Sunrise Stories.

Stockton has been feeling the negative effects of eating so much junk during the Christmas weekend. Let’s just say he’s now on a strict diet of anything besides the stuff he ate during the holidays, but he said it was absolutely delicious. Here’s hoping the heartburn goes away sometime before he dies.

Happy Friday Eve!

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