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March 26, 2023

Man arrested after fleeing from police

WATSONVILLE—A man wanted on several local and federal warrants was arrested after fleeing from officers and crashing into two cars Wednesday.

Watsonville Police spokeswoman Michelle Pulido said the ordeal began around 1:50pm when patrol officers attempted to pull over a man driving a Honda Accord for a vehicle code violation near Main and Fifth streets.

Instead of pulling over, the driver, identified as Nathanael Avila, 35, drove off from officers, ran a stop sign and crashed into a Toyota SUV.  That’s when police backed off in hopes of avoiding further risk, Pulido said. But, as Avila continued to dart off, he careened around the corner from East Fifth Street and smashed into a parked GMC Yukon SUV on Lincoln Street. 

Avila then took off on foot a short distance and tried to hide beneath a parked car. Police, who were quick to arrive, found Avila and took him into custody without further incident.

Pulido said Avila had several outstanding local and federal warrants, including a federal one for possession of firearms.

Avila was booked into the Santa Cruz County Jail on felony evasion charges.

Tarmo Hannula
Tarmo Hannula has been the lead photographer with The Pajaronian newspaper in Watsonville since 1997. He also reports on a wide range of topics, including police, fire, environment, schools, the arts and events. A fifth generation Californian, Tarmo was born in the Mother Lode of the Sierra (Columbia) and has lived in Santa Cruz County since the late 1970s. He earned a BA from UC Santa Cruz and has traveled to 33 countries.


  1. thank you , WPD. that means both he and his firearms will be off the streets of Watsonville. a big win for us all around !

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  2. ST no one cares about your opinion. What an idiotic post once again. Were his firearms on the street all by themselves? Steve you are a bid LOSS for Watsonville all around. Try learning punctuation. That will be a win for readers. Your poor writing skills (or lack thereof) are an embarrassment to Cabrillo. Please move back to where ever you came from, or maybe go work for your clone George Santos.

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