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Endangered person advisory issued for teenage boys

An endangered person advisory has been issued for two teenage boys who escaped from a group home for troubled teens in Sevier County.

Police are concerned because Alan Cherkin, 17, is a diabetic who has gone more than 36 hours without medication.

"Our biggest issue right now is we're worried about his medical condition," Sevier County Sheriff's detective Nathan Curtis said today.

Cherkin and Travis Cornwell, 17, ran away from the Sorenson's Ranch School near Koosharem, in rural Sevier County, early Monday morning. At about 12:20 a.m., staffers noticed the teens were missing.

While on the run, deputies said the boys managed to steal a cell phone from a pickup parked near Koosharem Reservoir.

"He was able to make a phone call to a friend," Curtis said. "He said, 'We're heading to Vegas. Don't call the cops."'

The phone was found early this morning on a farmer's driveway in Parowan. Authorities were investigating if the teens had stolen a car.

"Unless they hitched a ride or something, that's the only way I can think of," Curtis said.

An alert put out by the Utah Department of Public Safety said that both boys have prior criminal records for stolen vehicles and had made statements prior to leaving that they were going to steal a vehicle.

"A month ago, these same two ran away and made it to Greenwich in Paiute County," Curtis said. "They stole a car, got into a high-speed chase and made it near Panguitch, where a deputy spiked the tires."

DPS said that Cornwell also has a criminal history of assault with a deadly weapon, but Sevier County authorities said they did not believe the teens were a threat to public safety.

"Our biggest concern is the one is a diabetic and may have medical issues," Curtis said.

Cherkin, who is from Pennsylvania, is described as white, about 5-foot-9, 140 pounds, with short brown hair and brown eyes. Cornwell, who is from Florida, is white, about 5-foot-10, 145 pounds, with shaved blond hair and hazel eyes.

Anyone with information is urged to call police.


E-mail: bwinslow@desnews.com