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Judge sentences man to 92 years for attempted murder of CHPD officers

Justin Hurst
Justin Hurst was convicted by a jury on May 17, 2018.

Sentinel staff report–
A 35-year-old man who was found guilty of nearly a dozen felony charges, including attempted murder of two Citrus Heights police officers, was sentenced to 92 years to life last week.

Hurst’s case stemmed from a 2016 high-speed chase in Citrus Heights where he was found guilty of attempted murder and assault with a semi-automatic firearm on a peace officer, reckless evasion of a peace officer, possession of an assault weapon, possession of a short-barreled shotgun, and four counts of being a felon in possession of a firearm.

According to an Oct. 15 news release from the Sacramento County District Attorney’s Office, Justin Hurst was sentenced by Sacramento Superior Court Judge Steve White, following a conviction by a jury in May.

The DA’s office previously said Hurst was facing a maximum sentence of 42 years to life, but the judge found true additional allegations involving a 1999 strike conviction for first-degree burglary and three prior convictions for being a felon in possession of a firearm.

Hurst had a felony warrant at the time of the 2016 incident and was also on Post-Release Community Supervision for prior crimes.

As previously reported on The Sentinel, Hurst was arrested on Sept. 1, 2016, after police received a call regarding a suspicious person looking into parked cars at Northwoods Park, near Old Ranch Road and Oak Avenue. Police at the time said that an officer found him sleeping in a vehicle on the 8200 block of Old Ranch Road, where he provided identification and admitted to being on parole or probation.

While talking to the officer, police said he “began acting suspiciously and appeared very nervous.” After being asked if he had anything illegal inside the vehicle, Hurst then became uncooperative and the officer attempted to detain him using “an open hand control hold,” according to a police news release issued after the arrest.

Hurst then “pulled away from the officer [and] fled the area in the vehicle at a high rate of speed,” but crashed nearby after losing control and nearly hitting a house. During the brief pursuit, police said he fired several rounds through the rear window of his vehicle, but no officers were hit or injured.

Despite suffering a head injury in the collision, police said Hurst tried to flee the vehicle as officers approached. He was apprehended and taken to a local hospital for treatment before being booked into the Sacramento County Jail three days later.

A search of his car revealed 13 cartridge casings, four firearms and boxes of ammunition, the District Attorney’s Office said.

Following Hurst’s conviction in May, Citrus Heights Police Chief Ron Lawrence told The Sentinel the case underscored the dangers of police work and said the department was “fortunate that no one got injured or killed.”

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