Plea-bargain for couple caught in high-speed car chase |

Plea-bargain for couple caught in high-speed car chase

Robert Stern

A couple chased by multiple law enforcement agencies over the state line twice and captured at Monitor Pass July 26 pleaded “no contest” to charges at El Dorado County Superior Court Friday.

In a plea bargain, the couple waived their rights to both a jury and court hearing. They will be sentenced Thursday Sept. 20 in El Dorado County Superior Court.

Nicole Rhiley, 29, could face a maximum of three years and eight months and Kenneth Cadwallader, 38, could face a maximum of seven years and eight months in California State Prison.

The deputy district attorney, Tony Sears, said he will ask for the maximum penalty.

Rhiley is charged with falsifying her identification and evading arrest. Cadwallader is charged with second degree burglary and assault with a deadly weapon, which was a stolen Toyota Tacoma that he allegedly used in an attempt to run over a Staples Office Supply Store manager.

Charges of aggravated assault and child endangerment were dropped from both defendants, and charges of burglary were dropped from Rhiley in the plea bargain. But the dropped charges can be considered during the sentencing.

Otherwise Rhiley could have faced a maximum of 21 years in prison and $40,000 in fines. Cadwallader could have faced an additional year.

Despite the number of original charges, Sears said the sentencing for both Cadwallader and Rhiley is fair.

“This disposition secures an appropriate level of incarceration overall,” Sears said.

Charges in Douglas County are pending further review by the prosecution, said a spokeswoman for the Douglas County District Attorney’s office.

The 10-year-old child presumed to be the daughter of Cadwallader and Rhiley is in the custody of South Lake Tahoe Child Protective Services.

Attorneys for both Cadwallader and Rhiley declined to comment on the case.

Cadwallader initially drew attention to himself on July 26 by stealing a $600 digital camera from the Staples in South Lake Tahoe. He was chased outside by Adrian Narvaez, a Staples manager. Narvaez tried to stop the vehicle by standing in the way. According to a police report. Narvaez was injured in an attempt to grab onto the truck. He was treated and released for minor injuries at Barton Memorial Hospital.

What ensued was a chase by law enforcement from multiple jurisdictions in both California and Nevada. The couple crashed into some trees at Monitor Pass and was apprehended after fleeing on foot.

The couple gave California Highway Patrol fake names when arrested, but the police, who found numerous fake IDs in the vehicle, later discovered the their real identities after fingerprints were taken. It was also discovered that Rhiley has warrants out for theft, assault and forging checks in Arizona under various aliases. The sentencing by El Dorado County Judge Jerald Lasarow will not include these charges.

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