FedEx driver arrested as fugitive in California vehicular homicide case

Posted 4/7/21

A FedEx truck driver was arrested while he was making deliveries Wednesday in Port Townsend after police discovered he was wanted in California for two felony charges of vehicular …

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FedEx driver arrested as fugitive in California vehicular homicide case

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A FedEx truck driver was arrested while he was making deliveries Wednesday in Port Townsend after police discovered he was wanted in California for two felony charges of vehicular manslaughter.

Edward Kenneth Perez, 32, made his first appearance in Jefferson County Superior Court Thursday on a criminal charge of being a fugitive from justice.

Perez, a Port Angeles resident, had been charged in June 2019 in Colusa County Superior Court for gross vehicular manslaughter while under the influence following a deadly crash on Interstate 5 in northern California.

Perez had been speeding south on I-5 when he lost control of the 2002 Chevrolet Tahoe he was driving and rolled over the SUV, according to news reports. 

Two passengers, two tribal members from the Port Angeles area — Clayton Lloyd Charles, 35, and Crystal Leann Grall, 33 — were thrown from the Tahoe and were killed in the May 12, 2019 crash.

A warrant for Perez’s arrest was issued by a superior court judge in Colusa, California after Perez did not show up for a court appearance on the two felony charges.

A Jefferson County sheriff’s deputy was told by the Port Angeles Police Department that Perez was in the area Wednesday and he was stopped in his FedEx truck on Discovery Road.

When the deputy told Perez he was under arrest for vehicular manslaughter out of California, Perez said, “That was two years ago,” according to court documents.

Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Chris Ashcraft asked that bail for Perez be set at $250,000.

Ashcraft said Perez has a criminal history in Washington that includes three previous convictions; first-degree assault, second-degree robbery, and fourth-degree assault.

Ashcraft noted that Perez also had a warrant for his arrest in connection with a failure to complete treatment as required with one of his convictions in Washington state.

Superior Court Judge Keith Harper agreed ordered Perez held in the county jail on $250,000 bail.

“Given your felony history, and an outstanding warrant, that would be another reason to consider you a high risk to not show up,” the judge said.

Harper noted that the bail amount was identical to that set in California on the original charges.

“It’s alleged in each count that you were driving under the influence and ... basically killed two other people,” Harper said.

Perez is scheduled to appear again in Jefferson County Superior Court for his arraignment on the fugitive from justice charge on Friday, April 9.

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