By Paul Daquilante • Staff Writer • 

Car crashes into building in McMinnville; driver arrested

A Newberg man was arrested Saturday night after his vehicle hurtled into the old Hubbard’s Shoe Grease Company quarters at 1145 N.E. Lafayette Ave. at a high rate of speed. Sgt. Tim Symons of the McMinnville police identified the suspect as Jorge Alberto Valdez, 19, of 207 E. Seventh St.

Valdez was charged with one count each of first-degree criminal mischief, second-degree criminal trespass, driving under the influence of intoxicants, hit-and-run, reckless endangering, attempt to elude/vehicle and attempt to elude/foot. He was lodged in the Yamhill County Jail on $40,000 bail.

Symons gave this account of the 10 p.m. crash:

A McMinnville officer attempted to stop a 2002 Dodge Stratus that was southbound on Northeast Lafayette Avenue without headlights. The car sped off, turned west on 11th Way, north on Alpine Avenue and east on 12th Avenue before returning to Lafayette Avenue.

The car attempted to turn back onto 11th Way westbound at a high rate of speed, but went out of control and crashed into the building, damaging both.

Valdez escaped injury.

While two passengers remained with the vehicle and cooperated with officers, Valdez and another passenger fled on foot. Officers discovered them hiding in the backyard of a residence on Riverside Drive.

Valdez recorded a blood alcohol content of .16, twice the presumptive level of intoxication in Oregon.

The 14-year-old boy who fled with him was cited for minor in possession of alcohol by consumption. He was transported by McMinnville Fire Department ambulance to the Willamette Valley Medical Center for evaluation of potential injuries.

The two passengers who remained in the vehicle also sustained minor injuries. They were not cited.

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