A former Vancouver man captured years after skipping town to avoid a drunken-driving trial in Oregon was sentenced to five years in prison Monday for the fiery 2006 crash, The Oregonian newspaper reported Tuesday.
Douglas Eugene Price had left his Vancouver home with his wife and started a new life in the small town of Nevada, Mo., the paper reported. Last year, U.S. marshals acting on an anonymous tip found Price living under the name “Josh Gibson” and brought him back to jail in Oregon.
During a hearing earlier this month in Multnomah County Circuit Court, Price pleaded guilty to third-degree assault, driving under the influence of intoxicants and failure to appear in connection with the crash, which injured Price, three of his passengers and a cab driver.
Price’s blood-alcohol level after the crash was .10 percent, above the .08 percent legal limit for driving.
When he got out of the hospital, Price ignored law enforcement orders to turn himself in. When police tracked him down and arrested him, he convinced Multnomah County Circuit Judge Marilyn Litzenberger to allow his release pending trial, prosecutor Kirsten Snowden said. The prosecution had objected, noting Price had a previous conviction for failing to show up to court in Washington, she said. Price skipped town before his trial began.
On Monday, defense attorney James Britt said his client was “constantly looking over his shoulder,” and hiding his past weighed heavily on him. Britt added that Price, now 31, was “very young” when he decided to run, the newspaper reported.