Wanted parolee accused of backing stolen car into police cruiser - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Wanted parolee accused of backing stolen car into police cruiser pleads not guilty

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EL CAJON (CNS) - A parolee accused of backing a stolen car into a police cruiser in La Mesa, triggering a pursuit, pleaded not guilty Friday to assault on a peace officer and other charges.

Henry Zimmeth, 49, of Lakeside, was ordered held on $500,000 bail.

The charges against Zimmeth include an allegation that he was out on bail awaiting trial on a burglary/auto theft case at the time, said Deputy District Attorney Cherie Somerville.

Zimmeth is also charged in a third case with corporal injury to a spouse and reckless evading, the prosecutor said.

The defendant -- who has a 2003 conviction for evading police -- faces 30 years in prison if convicted, Somerville said. Judge John Thompson set a readiness conference for Oct. 21 and a preliminary hearing for Oct. 27.

In addition to assault with a deadly weapon, Zimmeth is charged with resisting an executive officer, evading with reckless driving and auto theft.

A police officer tried to pull Zimmeth over on Lake Murray Boulevard around 3:45 a.m. Wednesday, but before the officer could get out of his car, the suspect backed into the black-and-white, then sped away, said La Mesa police Lt. Matt Nicholass.

The ensuing chase ended at a dead end in the 9400 block of Lake Murray Boulevard, according to Nicholass.

Investigators learned Zimmeth was a "parolee-at-large" and driving a vehicle from El Cajon that had yet to be reported stolen.

The officer's cruiser sustained moderate front-end damage, but no one was hurt, Nicholass said.

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