Driver pleads guilty in Pacific Beach hit-and-run
by NEAL PUTNAM
Published - 02/13/17 - 02:09 PM | 0 0 comments | 27 27 recommendations | email to a friend | print
A motorist pleaded guilty Feb. 9 to committing attempted murder and two assaults in hitting three pedestrians in Pacific Beach in which one suffered brain damage and was in a coma for three weeks.

Probation has been ruled out for Omar Anthony Gutierrez, 24, and he faces a prison sentence ranging from 5-17 years, said Deputy District Attorney David McNees.

J’Ron Erby, 23, was an intern for the then-San Diego Chargers when he was struck on Aug. 5, 2016 around 1 a.m. in the 900 block of Garnet Avenue. His roommate, Kendrick Hester, and the roommate’s friend, Martin Thomas, were also struck, and were hospitalized.

Erby was in a medically induced coma, but has made a significant recovery despite a skull fracture in three places and brain swelling. He was initially hospitalized in critical condition and on a ventilator.

Gutierrez pleaded guilty to attempted murder of Erby and two counts of assault with a deadly weapon in the striking of Hester and Thomas. The deadly weapon was the Hyundai Elantra Gutierrez was driving.

Also pleading guilty to accessory after the fact was Jamillah Amirah Jones, 23, who was with Gutierrez that night. Surveillance camera footage showed them walking down a sidewalk following a verbal altercation with Erby.

Sentencing was set for both on April 19 by San Diego Superior Court Timothy Walsh. McNees said Jones could be sentenced up to a year in jail and it is expected she would get probation.

Two other counts of attempted murder involving two others who jumped out of the path of the car were dismissed.

Gutierrez remains free on $350,000 bond and Jones is free on $20,000 bond. He was arrested Sept. 27, 2016, and Jones was charged in November.

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