Centralia Man Gets 5 Years After Leading Police on Chase, Hitting House With Car

By Natalie Johnson / njohnson@chronline.com

A Centralia man facing multiple felonies after allegedly fleeing from deputies and crashing his car into a house while in possession of drugs pleaded guilty this week in Lewis County Superior Court.

Gabriel Escamilla, 24, pleaded guilty to three counts of possession of heroin with intent to deliver and one count of attempting to elude a pursuing officer in two separate cases Wednesday.

Pursuant to a plea agreement, he was sentenced to 60 months, or five years in prison, with 12 months on the state Department of Corrections Community Custody program.

“I’ve got to make better choices, that’s all I can say,” Escamilla said at his sentencing hearing Wednesday.

He will get credit for approximately three months served in the Lewis County Jail.

One of the heroin charges and the eluding charge date to Aug. 28, when he reportedly fled from police attempting to arrest him on a state DOC warrant.

According to court documents, members of Lewis County’s Joint Narcotics Enforcement Team and DOC officers located Escamilla in a car in Centralia and attempted to conduct a traffic stop.

Escamilla allegedly sped away from police, running a stop sign and, unable to navigate a tight turn, hit a house off Woodland Avenue.

He then reportedly got out of the car and ran from officers “hopping over fences,” according to court documents. He was arrested after being found in the backyard of a residence on Atherton Street.
After being arrested, Escamilla was found to be in possession of methamphetamine, according to court documents.
Escamilla reportedly gave officers permission to search his vehicle, and they reported finding heroin, a scale and plastic bags.
The other two of the heroin charges were filed later, but date back to March and July.


After the March arrest, Escamilla “stated he was willing to work with law enforcement,” according to court documents, but “Escamilla’s cooperation was sparse at first, and then dwindled to nothing.”