Former grocery store magnate Deon Dove, scheduled for trial June 19-21 after backing out of two previous plea agreements, has pleaded guilty to eight tax-related charges.
Dove entered guilty pleas Friday before 4th District Judge Boyd L. Park to five second-degree felonies and three third-degree felonies in connection with allegations that he bilked the state out of more than $5 million in unpaid sales tax. He is scheduled to be sentenced July 20.Dove, owner of 10 bankrupt Dove's Happy Service Markets, was to be tried in January on 56 criminal counts. Prosecutors, however, requested more time to prepare their case.
The June 19-21 trial date, Dove's third, was to be vacated in April following Dove's scheduled guilty plea April 13. Fourth District Judge Boyd L. Park, however, stuck to that date after Dove's attorney, Kent Willis, said his client had changed his mind.
Dove apparently changed his mind again last week. He pleaded guilty Friday to racketeering, theft by deception, communications fraud and two counts of tax evasion - all second-degree felonies. In addition, he pleaded guilty to three counts of failure to pay sales tax, third-degree felonies.
Before Dove's original trial date in December, he had agreed to plead guilty to 12 counts in exchange for dismissal of the other counts, but later backed out of plea negotiations.
Dove moved from Springville to Logandale, Nev., early last year before being charged in April 1989. He works in a Logandale grocery store reportedly owned by his son-in-law.