Priest to appear in drunken driving case; Elmore to be evaluated |

Priest to appear in drunken driving case; Elmore to be evaluated

A San Jose priest arrested on suspicion of drunken driving will appear in Tahoe Township Justice Court on June 13 for an arraignment.

Walter Ernesto Suarezlopez, a 35-year-old priest for the San Jose Diocese, was arrested last month when he reportedly passed a Douglas County sheriff’s deputy at high speed in the Stateline casino corridor, the deputy reported.

Suarezlopez was driving a 2003 Hyundai at more than 40 mph in a 25 mph zone, the deputy reported.

Suarezlopez was given a field sobriety test in front of Harveys Resort and Casino. He allegedly blew a preliminary blood-alcohol level of 0.084 percent while subsequent breath tests at the jail registered a 0.093 percent and 0.088 percent.

The legal blood-alcohol limit in Nevada is 0.08 percent.

Suarezlopez made $1,500 cash bail. He has not entered a plea.

In other news:

— A preliminary hearing for Floyd Elmore was delayed so the 24-year-old who spent nearly three hours with a gun to his head near a busy commercial area could undergo drug and psychological evaluations.

Authorities say Elmore got high freebasing cocaine, then set fire to a small, antique lodge he used as his art studio before engaging authorities in a 2 1/2 -hour standoff as he held a Walther handgun to his head. He was arrested April 20 and remains in El Dorado County Jail in lieu of $50,000 bail.

He has pleaded not guilty to three felonies of causing fire to a structure, possessing a firearm while under the influence of a controlled substance and resisting an officer. The lone misdemeanor is carrying a firearm in public.

Each of the felonies carries a maximum three-year prison sentence. The misdemeanor carries a maximum six months in county jail.

During the May 8 hearing in El Dorado County superior court, defense attorney William Routsis requested Elmore be allowed read books while in jail. The judge told the request should be taken to the jail’s commander, Lt. Randy Peshon, who said the request was granted before the hearing. He was unsure of the book choice.

Peshon added Elmore is “transitioning out” of a safety watch.

“He’s doing pretty good,” Peshon said.

— A 21-year-old man was hit with a two Taser darts and given a five-second charge when he attempted to run from authorities at the Zephyr Cove Lodge parking lot Saturday afternoon, a Douglas County sheriff’s deputy reported.

Nathaniel David Allen was arrested on suspicion of battery on an officer, obstructing an officer and disorderly conduct. He was booked into Douglas County Jail at $25,687 bail.

A witness called the sheriff’s department to report a gold Chevy S-10 pickup driving 80 mph and using a road construction zone as a passing lane on Highway 50, the deputy stated.

The truck was located at the Zephyr Cove Lodge while Allen was found along the beach. Allen reportedly gave the two responding deputies a wrong name and shoved a deputy to the ground while he was being escorted to get his identification, authorities said.

After being shot with the two Taser darts, Allen fell to the ground, scraping his knees.

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