Man who escaped Evanston courtroom enters guilty pleas

EVANSTON (WNE) — A 25-year-old Evanston man was arraigned in Third District Court Tuesday, July 24, and, entered guilty pleas in all seven counts stemming from the June 26 incident at the Uinta County Complex in which he escaped from detention.

The move surprised those in the courtroom. At the time of the escape, Jonathan Olivares had just made an appearance in court on charges related to heroin delivery when he allegedly assaulted and disarmed a detention officer and stole a car at gunpoint before being apprehended after an approximately 30-minute manhunt.

Due to the escape incident, Olivares was charged with interfering with a peace officer by intentionally and knowingly causing bodily injury, interfering with a peace officer by intentionally and knowingly disarming her of her firearm, escaping from detention by assault upon a person, aggravated robbery, felony theft of a vehicle and aggravated assault and battery, all felonies, as well as misdemeanor theft of a firearm.

In total, the charges carry a maximum penalty of approximately 70 years in prison.

Although Olivares did enter guilty pleas, the court has not yet accepted those pleas as Olivares’s attorney, public defender Scott Sargent, motioned for a competency and fitness evaluation to be completed.

Judge Rick Lavery ordered that the competency and fitness evaluation be completed prior to a factual basis being provided for the court’s acceptance of the guilty pleas.

Olivares will remain in custody at the Uinta County Jail until the evaluation is completed, after which he will again appear in District Court.

Lavery, of Sweetwater County, took on the case because the June incident occurred just outside Judge Joseph Bluemel’s courtroom, presenting a conflict of interest for Bluemel.

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