■ By Taj Shorter / Metro Editor
Hemet police arrested a man last week after he almost crashed into a K9 handler while speeding down the Ramona Expressway.
On Tuesday, Jan. 15, a male suspect was driving an allegedly stolen sedan at a high rate of speed when he nearly swiped a HPD officer and K9 near Mountain Avenue. Suspecting the driver was under the influence, the officer attempted to conduct a routine traffic stop. Before the driver could be detained, he lost control and the car hit a curb going airborne and landing in a field off the road. According to sources, the suspect tried to flee the scene on foot after the crash, which left the vehicle stuck in mud.
According to the Riverside County Sheriff’s website, 36 year-old Juan Carlos Peguero was arrested for investigation of resisting arrest, causing harm to an officer’s K9, petty theft, and possession of stolen property. He was also on probation and was charged with allegedly failing to appear in court, according to police. He is currently being held without bail in the Indio jail.
The K9 involved reportedly sustained injuries in the apprehension of Peguero, but it is unclear what the current nature is of the K9’s health.
This is an ongoing investigation and further information has not been released at this time.