Robbery suspects plead guilty to reduced charges

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WALLA WALLA — Two suspects accused of robbing a man as he was walking in the Eastgate area in October have pleaded guilty to reduced charges in Walla Walla County Superior Court.

Derek D. Schultz, 23, of 360 S. Fourth Ave., entered a guilty plea Thursday to second-degree assault. The crime carries a standard-range penalty of three to nine months in the County Jail. But because of Schultz’s previous criminal history, he faces 12 months-and-a-day to 14 months in prison. The prosecution is recommending the low end of that sentencing range.

Co-defendant Emmanuel Serrano, 23, of 150 S. Wilbur Ave., No. 61, pleaded guilty Thursday to a second-degree robbery charge, which carries the same base standard range as second-degree assault. Therefore, because Serrano has no criminal history, his standard-range penalty will be three to nine months in jail.

Both men will be sentenced later.

Each had been charged with first-degree robbery in the attack on Kevin Bidwell near White Street and Defense Avenue about 7 a.m. on Oct. 14. But the prosecution agreed to reduce the cases in exchange for their guilty pleas.

Police said Serrano was driving his white Chevrolet Camaro with Schultz in the passenger seat when they came upon Bidwell.

Schultz reportedly got out of the car, approached Bidwell and asked for a cigarette. When Bidwell said he didn’t have one, Schultz attacked him and Serrano participated, according to officials.

Bidwell resisted, but he reported his wallet was stolen. He later was treated for facial injuries at Providence St. Mary Medical Center.

During the investigation, police found the Camaro outside Serrano’s residence, gathered additional evidence and arrested the men the afternoon of the robbery.

Terry McConn can be reached at terrymcconn@wwub.com or 526-8319.


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