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Brian Grant Nichols

Police: Driver hit building, woman, vehicle

A fugitive with a history of driving under the influence of alcohol is facing a long list of charges after allegedly striking a restaurant, running into a woman in a Walgreens parking lot and hitting another vehicle near Mae Richardson Elementary School in Central Point.

Brian Grant Nichols, 60, of the 300 block of West Pine Street in Central Point, has been charged with third-degree assault, driving under the influence of intoxicants, failure to perform the duties of a driver to injured persons, criminal driving with a suspended or revoked license, reckless driving, two counts of recklessly endangering another person and four counts of failing to perform the duties of a driver regarding property damage.

He pleaded not guilty this week and has a pretrial conference hearing scheduled for May 7, according to Jackson County Circuit Court records.

Nichols is being held in the Jackson County Jail without bail for allegedly violating parole conditions from a previous DUII, jail records show.

He is also wanted as a fugitive in California on charges of being a habitual traffic offender and driving with a suspended license, according to a fugitive complaint.

In the latest incident April 13, Nichols allegedly hit the El Poblano Mexican Restaurant building on North Front Street in Central Point, according to a probable cause affidavit.

He then allegedly struck a woman at Walgreens on North Front Street. She had to be taken to a hospital by ambulance due to an injury to her neck, the affidavit said.

The affidavit does not detail whether the woman was a pedestrian or in a vehicle at the time of the collision.

Nichols allegedly went on to hit a vehicle in the parking lot of Mae Richardson Elementary School on West Pine Street, then fled on foot, the affidavit said.

Police located him less than two blocks from the elementary school and took him into custody. He appeared to be highly intoxicated, the affidavit said.

Nichols allegedly refused to perform field sobriety tests or take a breath test. A search warrant for his blood was obtained and his blood was drawn at a hospital prior to his lodging in jail, the affidavit said.

The affidavit did not list his blood alcohol level.

Nichols pleaded guilty to DUII in Jackson County in 2017 after an Oregon State Police trooper observed his vehicle sitting at Ray’s Food Place in Central Point with one wheel on top of a planter. Nichols then drove off the planter and across the parking lot before stopping again, according to court records.

The trooper reported Nichols admitted to drinking, failed field sobriety tests and had bloodshot eyes, slurred speech and a strong odor of alcohol. He refused to take a breath test at the jail.

Nichols was sentenced to 180 days in jail, fined $1,000 and had his license suspended for life in that case, according to court records.

Also in 2017 in Jackson County, Nichols pleaded guilty to fourth-degree assault and strangulation. He was sentenced to 180 days in jail and ordered to complete domestic violence counseling, submit to urine and breath tests and abstain from alcohol, court records show.

Reach Mail Tribune reporter Vickie Aldous at 541-776-4486 or valdous@rosebudmedia.com. Follow her at www.twitter.com/VickieAldous.

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