A former Moab businessman and outfitter who pleaded guilty to felony poaching in April is sitting in the Grand County Jail on a no-bail hold facing alleged probation violation and more than a dozen theft charges, along with a host of weapons offenses and allegations of selling methamphetamine.
Mark Thayn, 57, on Sept. 12 waived his right to preliminary hearings in two cases and will be arraigned Sept. 25 in front of 7th District Court Judge Don Torgerson.
Thayn’s most recent problems began Aug. 23 when his probation officer asked local law enforcement to arrest Thayn on a 72-hour hold for allegedly failing to check in over a period of several weeks. A short while later, Grand County Sheriff’s Deputy Jamison Wiggins spotted Thayn sitting in a car in the City Market parking lot. Wiggins allegedly found two knives, a small amount of methamphetamine, a scale, “a couple handfuls of small plastic bags,” and meth pipes in Thayn’s car. The deputy arrested him on a count of possession of a controlled substance, possession of paraphernalia, and two counts of possession of a dangerous weapon by a restricted person due to his status as a felon.
While that was enough – if convicted – to merit a revocation of Thayn’s probation and send him to prison, his troubles grew exponentially worse two days later when another deputy who spent several weeks investigating the theft of more than a dozen guns owned by the National Wild Turkey Federation visited Thayn in the jail.
Thayn, according to Deputy Nathaniel Whitney’s report, was not honest in his answers and blamed a former girlfriend, Bree Dooley, for stealing the guns, valued at more than $5,100. Dooley, coincidentally, was also an inmate at the Grand County Jail. She reportedly told Whitney that she and Thayn were living together at Thayn’s home last fall and winter and that they did meth together. She said he blamed the theft of the guns on his ex-wife and that he had filed a report with law enforcement.
Already on probation for the poaching charge, Thayn in June pleaded guilty to possessing a dangerous weapon by a restricted person and in exchange the state dismissed four identical charges, in addition to charges of obstructing justice and two counts of possession or use of a controlled substance in an unrelated case.
He was placed on probation and only made one visit to his probation officer, according to reports. Thayn could conceivably spend decades in prison if convicted on all or even most of the charges he faces.