Driver in police chase receives 90-month prison sentence

Joseph Arthur Williams was sentenced to 90 months in prison Monday in Linn County Circuit Court.

Additionally, he faced license suspensions and was ordered to pay restitution.

He pleaded guilty in Linn County Circuit Court to to three counts of second-degree assault, reckless driving, two counts of recklessly endangering another person and two counts of first-degree criminal mischief on Dec. 17. The charges stemmed from a police pursuit through residential streets on Oct. 24 that ended with three totaled patrol vehicles.

In a plea bargain, three counts of assaulting a public safety officer, failure to perform the duties of a driver to an injured person, two counts of attempting to elude and three counts of recklessly endangering another person were dismissed.

The pursuit began when a caller reported seeing a male subject in a 1978 Chevrolet pickup spotlighting deer in the area of 25700 Hwy. 228. A deputy responded, and Williams allegedly fled toward Sweet Home. A pursuit wound through the neighborhood of Third and Fourth avenues and Fern Ridge.

On Third Avenue, Williams rammed two Sweet Home patrol cars deliberately, pushing one backward along the street, totaling both patrol cars and causing minor damage to an unmarked Linn County Sheriff’s Office Mustang. Williams’ vehicle collided with a Linn County patrol car on Fourth and was damaged, causing it to crash into a retaining wall, where Williams was taken into custody.

A parked Honda was also damaged during the pursuit.