Crime

Richland man accused of trying to lure teens for sex

A 36-year-old Richland man is accused of trying to get two teen boys to go into his basement for sex.

Richland police went to the area of Jadwin Avenue and Davenport Street around 10:20 p.m. Tuesday after the 14-year-olds called police.

The boys said they were walking down the street when Aaron Meola reportedly approached them and asked if they wanted to go inside to have sexual contact with him, said Richland police Sgt. Mike Harrison.

The boys said no, then wenthome and called 911.

Officers got a warrant and went to the home and arrested Meola inside without incident, Harrison said.

He is being held in the Benton County jail for investigation of two counts of luring.

13-year-old driver arrested for attempting to elude police

A 13-year-old girl briefly tried to speed away from Benton County sheriff's deputies during an early-morning traffic stop, but quickly changed her mind and stopped, authorities said.

A deputy was on Highway 240 near the Edison Street exit around 2 a.m. Wednesday when he spotted a car driving erratically and pulled it over as a possible DUI, said Lt. Chuck Jones.

The driver pulled over, but then the 13-year-old passenger jumped into the driver's seat, he said.

She took off, but then gave up after about 100 yards and stopped, Jones said.

Deputies determined two girls in the car had taken the vehicle without permission from their parents. They were arrested on suspicion of vehicle theft and the 13-year-old also was taken to the juvenile detention center for attempting to elude police.

Four other teens in the car also were taken into custody for being minors in possession/consumption of alcohol and obstructing police, Jones said.

One youth apparently had just been released the day before from juvenile detention.

Basin City man injured in collision with potato truck

A Basin City man was hurt early Wednesday after turning in front of a potato truck on the Pasco-Kahlotus Highway, the Washington State Patrol said.

Brandon C. Wilbert was driving north on the highway around 6 a.m. when he tried to turn left onto Commercial Avenue, troopers said.

Wilbert's 1994 Toyota Camry was hit by a semi-truck hauling potatoes that was going south on the P-K Highway.

Wilbert was treated at Lourdes Medical Center in Pasco.

The driver of the 2001 Freightliner, Francisco Mohedano-Mohedano, 29, of Pasco, was not injured.

The cause of the collision remains under investigation.

-- Paula Horton: 582-1556; phorton@tricityherald.com

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