The Tyler Walker saga has continued with a circuit judge issuing an arrest warrant for the 35-year-old ex-NASCAR driver, who failed to show up at a court hearing this afternoon.
According to The Spectrum of St. George, Utah, Walker was to mail a plea agreement to the 5th District Court. It was the 12th attempt to resolve Walker’s drug and police evasion charges stemming from a high-speed police chase in 2013 that stretched across Nevada, Arizona, and Utah.
Instead, the Spectrum reports that Walker’s defense attorney, Trevor Terry, informed the court that Walker had mailed in the wrong plea agreement from California and that he expected his client to return the correct plea agreement that afternoon.
That didn’t sit well with Judge Eric Ludlow, who declared that he would no longer accept the plea agreement by mail. He then showed his frustration with the repeated delays, saying that his patience was “well beyond thin.”
A warrant was issued for $25,000 payable only in cash, and Ludlow also ordered that the bail Walker posted last year be forfeited. Terry objected, but the judge would have none of it.
“I don’t think you understand,” Ludlow said. “He’ll be here, OK?…He’ll make the trip…I’m not messing around with Mr. Walker any more.”
Terry, who said that Walker has completed “intensive outpatient [drug] treatment” in California, feels that he was receiving the blame for the delays.
“While I respect the court’s decision, I think the direction of the court’s frustration is misguided,” he added.
No new hearing date has been scheduled.
Earlier this fall, prosecutors had asked to delay the completion of the agreement after reports surfaced that Walker was facing new criminal charges in California.
However, after difficulty attaining a report from California law enforcement on his criminal history there, it was decided that the agreement would go through without a report.
Walker allegedly drove up to 150 miles per hour in his car during the police chase in 2013. He was charged with multiple felonies and misdemeanors including but not limited to possession of amphetamines, marijuana and narcotic equipment, and driving under the influence.
His passenger, Raelle McDonald, has already pleaded guilty for related drug charges and was put on probation.
Walker was suspended by NASCAR in 2007 for violation of its substance abuse policy. He went on to continue his career in the World of Outlaws sprint car series.