Accused street terrorists plead not guilty

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A preliminary hearing has been set for Nov. 14 for two Colusa men accused in connection with an alleged assault and robbery on Bridge Street in Colusa in the early morning hours of Oct. 9. 

Nickolas Roberto Rojas, 25, and Andrew Garcia, 22, pleaded not guilty last week to multiple felony charges, including assault with a deadly weapon and street terrorism. 

Charges were dismissed against a third man, Alfred Demetrius Tobar, 27, who was initially arrested in connection to the crime. 

According to the Colusa Police Department, the victim, whose name is being withheld for his protection, was lured to an area off Bridge Street under the guise of making money, where Rojas allegedly grabbed him and pushed him against a nearby wooden fence, where he was hit with an unknown object and kicked while on the ground. 

Police said Garcia then cut the victim’s ear with a knife. 

Both Rojas and Garcia have long criminal histories, according to court records. At the time of the incident, Rojas was facing a separate assault charge for a May 8 incident after Colusa police officers attempted to stop the vehicle he was driving in the area of Webster and 10th streets. 

Officers said Rojas failed to yield and a pursuit ensued down Main Street. Rojas was reportedly traveling in excess of 80 mile per hour before he hit a patrol car head on near the Colusa VFW hall. 

Rojas then tried to flee on foot but was caught after a short chase, officers said. 

Rojas pleaded not guilty on Aug. 8 to evading, resisting, and assaulting a police officer, possession of drug paraphernalia, and special allegations of prior felony convictions.  

He is scheduled to appear for a trail readiness conference in Colusa County Superior Court today. A jury trial has been set to begin Jan. 8, 2020. 

Garcia was previously arrested for being a felon in possession of a firearm, but pleaded no contest to possession of ammunition and was sentenced to probation. 

A separate hearing on charges he violated the terms of his probation in connection to that case is also set for Nov. 14. 

The victim in the Oct. 9 incident has since left Colusa for fear of his safety, according to the Colusa Police Department. ■