No charges after man in stolen car nearly hit deputy and K-9 head-on before crashing

HEMET — A wanted probationer was arrested after nearly plowing head-on into a sheriff deputy and his canine companion in Hemet before crashing into a field early Tuesday morning, Jan 15. Jail records indicate the alleged suspect was charged with injuring the K-9 who assisted in the man’s apprehension, but officials have not yet specified the nature or extent of the dog’s injuries, or if the canine required medical treatment.

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The alleged suspect, 36-year-old, Juan Carlos Peguero, was booked into jail on suspicion of resisting arrest, causing injury to a police canine, and possession of stolen property. He was also booked on a petty theft warrant, as well as violation of his PRCS probation.

Although the Riverside County District Attorney’s Office did not file charges on him for any of the alleged crimes related to Tuesday’s crash of the stolen car, he remains in custody on the probation violation and is being held without bail. There could be a number of reasons for the DA’s decision to not file charges, including the case needing further investigation, and charges could still be filed at a later time.

Peguaro was arrested just after 12:30 a.m., after sources say he nearly struck a sheriff’s K-9 handler head-on. The near-collision happened while the man was traveling southbound in a small sedan on Ramona Expressway/Mountain Ave. near Cedar.

Suspecting the driver was possibly under the influence, the K-9 Handler made a U-Turn, with the intention of stopping the man and checking his sobriety.

Before the deputy could catch up to the speeding sedan the driver, later identified as Peguero, lost control along a sweeping curve in the roadway. The sedan careened off the rain-slicked road and went airborne after hitting a curb.

According to sources familiar with the incident, he was apprehended after attempting to flee from the car, which became stuck and disabled in the muddy field.

Sheriff’s officials have not yet released any information regarding this incident or why the man was ultimately not charged after the incident.

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Eddie George/Hemet News video

Contact the writer: trevor.rcns@gmail.com

Trevor Montgomery, 47, moved last year to the Intermountain area of Shasta County from Riverside County and runs Riverside County News Source and Shasta County News Source. Additionally, he writes for several other news organizations; including Riverside County based newspapers, Valley News, The Valley Chronicle, and Anza Valley Outlook; as well as Bonsall/Fallbrook Village News in San Diego County and Mountain Echo in Shasta County.

Trevor spent 10 years in the U.S. Army as an Orthopedic Specialist before joining the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department in 1998. He was medically retired after losing his leg, breaking his back, and suffering both spinal cord and brain injuries in an off-duty accident. (Click here to see segment of Discovery Channel documentary of Trevor’s accident.)

During his time with the sheriff’s department, Trevor worked at several different stations; including Robert Presley Detention Center, Southwest Station in Temecula, Hemet/Valle Vista Station, Ben Clark Public Safety Training Center, and Lake Elsinore Station; along with other locations.

Trevor’s assignments included Corrections, Patrol, DUI Enforcement, Boat and Personal Water-Craft based Lake Patrol, Off-Road Vehicle Enforcement, Problem Oriented Policing Team, and Personnel/Background Investigations. He finished his career while working as a Sex Crimes and Child Abuse Investigator and was a court-designated expert in child abuse and child sex-related crimes.

Trevor has been married for more than 28 years and was a foster parent to more than 60 children over 13 years. He is now an adoptive parent and his “fluid family” includes 13 children and 15 – but soon to be 16 – grandchildren.

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