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Police concerned about possible looting in wreckage of home destroyed by rock slide

ROCKVILLE, Washington County — Less than a week after a massive boulder killed a Rockville couple and destroyed their home, police are concerned that looters may be picking through the wreckage.

The two-story log cabin where Jeff Elsey, 58, and Maureen Morris, 65, lived along state Route 9 west of Rockville is no longer recognizable after the slide crushed it Thursday. In the devastation, police are unsure what's left from inside the home, but several small items that have been recovered from the rubble seem to have disappeared, Springdale Police Chief Kurt Wright said Tuesday.

"There was a KitchenAid mixer that was sitting outside in the driveway. Somebody took it but left the mixing bowl. It's just odd things like that," Wright said. "It's hard to say what's been taken."

Every day since the rock slide a parade of cars has gone past the house to gawk at the boulder the size of a semitruck that destroyed the home in an instant. So far, officers haven't had trouble with anyone crossing the police line as they stop to take photos, but now Wright worries someone is casing the home for property that survived the collapse.

"We're not sure if those people are seeing things and then coming back after dark when the property is vacant," Wright said.

A Springdale police officer stayed at the house Monday night, and officers will keep watch until the insurance company puts up a fence Wednesday.

The site will remain busy as geology experts from the state come to measure the boulders and the Utah Department of Transportation reviews the scene, Wright said.

In the meantime, Wright has asked friends and family members to take photo albums or other personal items that are accessible.

"We've been making an effort to get stuff cleaned out as best we can and as safe as we can," Wright said. "They're just trying to get items of memorabilia for the family."


Twitter: McKenzieRomero