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Walla Walla County Courthouse

A Walla Walla man admitted Friday in Walla Walla County Superior Court to a charge related to stealing a truck and crashing it while the truck’s borrower tried stopping him.

Benjamin R. Carroll, 23, was arrested on Feb. 20 after officers responded at 1:01 a.m. to the 500 block of Pine Street. A woman called dispatch and said her boyfriend was chasing Carroll, who had allegedly had stolen a 1998 Ford F150 truck loaned to the couple from her mother.

Officers found Carroll near Sumach and Park streets barefoot. Carroll told them he picked up a truck for a friend and “someone came through the rear sliding window and hit him, and he ran away from the guy,” records stated.

He also said an acquaintance asked him to bring the truck to Southgate Center Market (formerly Harvest Foods) to exchange it for fentanyl, and the messages were on his cell phone.

The truck belonged to the woman’s mother, records stated. The woman’s boyfriend said he heard the truck’s engine from inside the home and saw someone was stealing it. He jumped into the back of the truck as Carroll drove away, crawled through the window and tried shifting it to park. However, the truck crashed and his head was injured.

Carroll was charged and pleaded not guilty March 2 to vehicle theft, injury hit-and-run and third-degree driving with a suspended/revoked license.

However, his charges were reduced through a plea agreement with prosecutors to just vehicle theft, to which he pleaded guilty.

He was ordered to receive a pre-sentence drug offender sentencing alternative exam prior to sentencing.

Emily Thornton can be reached at

emilythornton@wwub.com or 509-526-8325.

Emily Thornton covers courts and emergency services, as well as other various stories. She has been in the newspaper industry off and on since roughly 1999 and lived primarily on the West Coast, but also Florida and Europe.