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News / Clark County News

Woman pleads guilty in viral bridge-shoving incident

By Jerzy Shedlock, Columbian Breaking News Reporter
Published: March 18, 2019, 9:21am

Tay’Lor Smith, who’s accused of pushing Jordan Holgerson of Kalama off the bridge at Moulton Falls Regional Park in August, pleaded guilty to misdemeanor reckless endangerment Monday morning in Clark County District Court. The prosecution is recommending a sentence with no jail time.

Smith, 19, will be sentenced March 27. The gross misdemeanor carries a maximum penalty of up to a year in jail and/or a $5,000 fine.

However, if Judge Darvin Zimmerman accepts the attorneys’ agreement, Smith will be ordered to home confinement with electronic monitoring, as well as some form of community service.

Sentencing in the case was postponed until next week, in part, because defense attorney Nathan Pliska, of Vancouver Defenders, requested more time to prepare. Zimmerman said it would also allow Holgerson time to collect her thoughts on the incident, if she cared to speak at the hearing. He added he would like to hear more about the extent of her injuries and medical care costs.

“She doesn’t want more time, your honor,” Holgerson’s mother, Genelle Holgerson, said from the gallery.

Outside the courtroom, Genelle Holgerson said her daughter is going to physical therapy for a shoulder injury and has developed anxiety. Both said they just want this chapter of their lives to be over.

A 10-second video that captured the Aug. 7 incident and circulated on Facebook, shows Jordan Holgerson, then 16, standing on the bridge, outside of the railing, apparently hesitating to jump. A woman pushes her, sending her into the water below.

Holgerson broke five ribs in the fall. Both of her lungs were punctured, either from the pressure of the fall or the impact.

Several days later, Smith was identified by the Clark County Sheriff’s Office as the person pushing Holgerson in the video. In the aftermath, Smith appeared on “Good Morning America.” In the interview, she said she didn’t consider the repercussions of the push beforehand.

On the day of the incident, Holgerson, Smith and several friends drove to Moulton Falls Regional Park. Holgerson watched a friend jump from the bridge and decided she wanted to try it herself, according to a probable cause affidavit filed in support of the reckless endangerment charge.

“Once at the top, Jordan hesitated and began to have second thoughts about jumping. It should be noted that the surface of the bridge is 50 feet above the river,” the affidavit says.

Columbian Breaking News Reporter