Man pleads guilty in June vehicle pursuit


WALLA WALLA — A local man pleaded guilty Monday to leading a Walla Walla police officer on a vehicle chase last month in the southwest part of the city.

Hugo C. Hernandez, 29, of 327 Myrtle St., entered the guilty plea in Superior Court to the charge of attempting to elude a pursuing police vehicle.

In exchange, the prosecution agreed to drop charges of driving under the influence and not physically possessing a valid operator’s license at the time, and recommend three months in the County Jail when Hernandez is sentenced.

That’s the low end of the three- to eight-month standard-range penalty he faces.

Police say the June 3 chase began about 2:40 a.m. near the 1800 block of Plaza Way when Officer Nicholas Henzel spotted a dark gray Mazda3 accelerate and turn abruptly east onto Tietan Street.

Hernandez was driving about 60 mph, turned north onto Fourth Avenue, east onto Orchard Street, south onto Third Avenue and west down the alley between Kenneth Street and Orchard with Henzel in pursuit.

Hernandez then stopped the vehicle, got out and was arrested at gunpoint.

Breath tests reportedly revealed his blood-alcohol level at over .13. The legal limit is .08.

Bail was set at $25,000. He was released from jail after a bail bond was posted and remains free pending sentencing.

Terry McConn can be reached at or 526-8319.


wwnative 2 years, 4 months ago

Another softball plea bargain from our local legal beagles. Drop the charges and get a guilty plea. Are our local prosecutors allergic to courtrooms? I'm surprised it wasn't plea bargained to jaywalking. I'm sure he would have taken that one.


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