Santa Barbara- S County

Driver in Chase and Crash Gets 10 Years

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - Santa Barbara County District Attorney's office released the following information:

District Attorney Joyce E. Dudley announced that on November 21, Evan Quinn Githens pled, as charged, to four felony counts including felony child endangerment, vehicle theft, evading officers with willful disregard for public safety, and hit-and-run causing injury.

Githens further admitted to having been previously convicted of elder abuse and witness intimidation along with having served a prior prison sentence.

The charges stemmed from an incident occurring on October 7, where Mr. Githens was driving a stolen vehicle when officers attempted a traffic stop on Highway 101 at Las Positas Road.

Githens led law enforcement on a high-speed chase through downtown Santa Barbara, running through stop signs and at times traveling 60-70 miles per hour on the wrong side of the road.

The pursuit ended at De La Vina Street and Arrellaga Street where Githens struck several vehicles before fleeing the scene and ultimately being apprehended several blocks away. 

Inside Githens' vehicle during the pursuit was his girlfriend with two young children, ages six and four; neither child was seriously injured. As a result of this plea he will serve 10 years in state prison. 

Sentencing is set for December 5 in Santa Barbara County Superior Court.

Deputy District Attorney Kevin Weichbrod stated, "This case demonstrates the significant consequences associated with the callous behavior exhibited by the defendant and his utter indifference for public safety and law enforcement."