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ML man appears in court in alleged assault case

by R. HANS MILLER
Staff Writer | December 28, 2021 1:00 AM

A Moses Lake man appeared in Grant County Superior Court Thursday for allegedly assaulting a woman he knew and interfering with domestic violence reporting.

Tyler Flores, 25, was charged Thursday with second-degree assault and interfering with the reporting of domestic violence after police were called Dec. 22 on a report of domestic violence in the 900 block of West Polo Ridge Drive in Moses Lake.

Flores was not supposed to have firearms, and, according to Moses Lake Police Department records, no weapons were used in the incident that led to Flores being arrested.

However, prosecutors wanted to be sure Flores had none.

“I did also send up the order for surrender of firearms as (Flores) has been convicted of a felony that would prohibit him from using or possessing any firearm,” said Grant County Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Brandon Guernsey.

Grant County Superior Court Judge Anna Gigliotti approved the firearm order per Guernsey’s request and set Flores’ bail at $2,500, half of the $5,000 bond Guernsey requested. Gigliotti said the charge of interference with reporting domestic violence comes with a possible penalty of up to 364 days in jail and a $5,000 fine.

The assault charge carries more severe consequences if Flores is convicted.

“(The charge) is assault in the second degree, which is a Class A felony,” Gigliotti said. “So, the maximum penalty is 10 years in prison or a $20,000 fine unless you have two other strike offenses. And if this was considered your third strike, you could be looking at the maximum of life in prison with the $20,000 fine.”

Flores’ criminal history has one prior conviction for fourth-degree assault in 2016, Guernsey said. Additionally, he has one burglary and one second-degree theft conviction, both from 2009. However, Guernsey asked for bail at $5,000 due to the seriousness of the charges Flores is facing.

At the prosecution’s request, Gigliotti issued a restraining order preventing Flores from contacting the alleged victim in the case, whether it be in-person, via social media or through third parties. Additionally, if Flores makes bail he must contact his attorney at least weekly and make all upcoming court appointments or face arrest and possible additional charges, Gigliotti said.

Flores spoke little during the hearing other than to acknowledge yes-or-no questions from Gigliotti and to discuss possible addresses he might stay while on bond.

Flores is employed at a paving company and works odd jobs in the community, in addition to his primary employment, public defender Dean Terrillion said.

This was the first hearing in Flores’ case, and arraignment is set for 9 a.m. Jan. 4, 2022, in Grant County Superior Court. A review of the protective order preventing him from contacting the victim is set for 9 a.m. Dec. 12, 2022.

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