Trial date set for alleged getaway driver

Carlos U. Ramirez is accused of driving another teen to and from a store the other teen allegedly robbed.

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WALLA WALLA -- An acknowledged local gang affiliate pleaded innocent this morning in Superior Court to driving the getaway car after a robbery of the Zip Zone Conoco in February.

Carlos U. Ramirez, 16, of 368 Myrtle St., is scheduled for trial July 7 in the court's Juvenile Department on the charge of first-degree rendering criminal assistance.

Ramirez is suspected of driving Corey J. Reece to and from the Zip Zone, 110 N. Ninth Ave., which Reece allegedly robbed about 1 a.m. Feb. 18.

Officials believe Reece was armed with a gun as he allegedly took two 12-packs of beer from the store and threatened the clerk.

In a later interview with police, Ramirez reportedly said he had driven his father's Toyota Camry -- with Reece in the front passenger seat -- to the area of the store. Reece got out, returned from the store with two 12-packs of beer and Ramirez drove them away westbound, according to Ramirez's account.

But Ramirez maintained he didn't learn until the following day that Reece allegedly had robbed the store, the police report says.

Reece, 25, of 9231/2 W. Chestnut St., was charged earlier in adult court and is awaiting trial on charges of first-degree robbery and second-degree unlawful possession of a firearm.

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

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