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Devan Evans

ST. GEORGE — Two Dixie State College men's basketball players are in jail today after being arrested on suspicion of multiple felony counts of aggravated robbery, burglary and theft.

Stanley Copeland, 19, and Devan Evans, 18, both of Las Vegas, were arrested Monday evening and booked into Purgatory Correctional Facility. Copeland's bail was set at $66,461. Evans' bail was set at $74,864.

Both suspects likely will appear in 5th District Court today via video monitor from the jail for a probable cause hearing, said Washington County Attorney Brock Belnap.

St. George Police Chief Marlon Stratton said during an afternoon news conference the two subjects were allegedly involved in an armed robbery at a local movie theater about 2 a.m. Monday.

An employee in the theater was cleaning when three subjects allegedly entered Stadium 10 Cinemas on Red Cliffs Drive and took a small amount of money. One of the subjects had a gun and fired one shot while inside the theater, but no one was injured, Stratton said.

Later Monday, employees of a Burger King on South Main in St. George called police to report an attempted armed robbery that occurred about 10 p.m. Sunday. No money was taken after the employee was able to escape into the building and the suspects fled. Both players are believed by police to have been involved in that robbery.

Two other 20-year-old Dixie State College male students also were arrested in connection with both armed robberies and booked into the county jail on similar charges, according to a press release issued by St. George police.

All four suspects allegedly were involved in a burglary of a home in the Bloomington Hills area of St. George, reported on Feb. 22, police said.

Copeland and Evans were immediately suspended from the Dixie State College Rebels basketball team, said Chris Taylor, DSC public relations director. Copeland is a forward and Evans is a guard on the team.

DSC Athletic Director Dexter Irvin and men's basketball coach Jeff Kidder did not return phone calls for comment Tuesday.

"These are disturbing charges. The reaction of everybody who knows these guys, from their roommates to faculty members to dorm parents, is just shock and disbelief," said Taylor. "The administration here has always said that participating in intercollegiate athletics is a privilege, not a right. If these charges are proven true, they will be off the team indefinitely."

All four DSC students were temporarily suspended from school and restricted from campus. A formal disciplinary hearing under the dean of students office will be held within a few days, Taylor added.

Dixie State College is scheduled to play Colorado Northwestern Community College on Friday and Saturday in Rangely, Colo.

E-mail: nperkins@desnews.com