DANVILLE (BCN) – Cainan Schierholtz, the younger brother of San Francisco Giants right fielder Nate Schierholtz, pleaded no contest Wednesday to two felonies and a misdemeanor in connection with a series of drunk driving crashes in Danville in August.
Schierholtz, 23, pleaded no contest to felony drunk driving causing injuries to four people, felony leaving the scene of an injury accident and misdemeanor hit-and-run as part of a plea agreement.
He was sentenced to one year in county jail starting Wednesday and five years probation. He has been in jail since the incident, but did not receive credit for time served as part of his plea agreement.
His driver’s license was suspended for one year and he was ordered to participate in 90 days of alcohol rehabilitation, which he has already completed through a voluntary program in county jail.
When he finishes his jail term, he will be required to complete an 18-month drunken driving program and, as part of his probation, is not allowed to drink alcohol or go to places where alcohol is the main substance served. He will also have to pay fines, fees and restitution to the victims.
The incident began about 10 a.m. on Aug. 1 when Schierholtz, who had a blood alcohol level of .19 percent, struck a bicyclist and then a pedestrian on Danville Boulevard, Danville police said.
He then swerved into traffic and crashed into a pickup truck, but kept going.
He turned onto Railroad Avenue, where he drove up onto the sidewalk and knocked down a light pole, police said.
He continued south on Railroad Avenue to Linda Mesa Avenue, where he allegedly rear-ended a sport utility vehicle, police said.
The driver of the pickup truck followed Schierholtz to Montair Drive and Macomber Road, where Schierholtz drove down a dead-end street.
According to witnesses, the pickup truck driver blocked the way out with his truck and waited for Schierholtz to come back. By the time he returned, several other people had arrived.
When Schierholtz stopped, the group pulled him out of his vehicle and held him until police arrived, witnesses said.
The bicyclist was taken by ambulance to a hospital and treated for multiple cuts, scrapes and minor head lacerations.
The pedestrian and two people from the SUV sought their own medical treatment. The driver of the pickup truck was not hurt, police said.
Contra Costa County Superior Court Judge Clare Maier said during the sentencing that she believes Schierholtz has taken responsibility for his actions and has made efforts to “face his demons” by voluntarily enrolling in the jail’s alcohol treatment program.
“He is a person who from day one…said I made a horrendous mistake and have gone down the wrong path,” Maier said.
Schierholtz’s family was in court Wednesday and Maier said she believed they would be a valuable support system for him.
“You’re a young man and I see a life ahead of you that doesn’t include talking to me from behind bars,” Maier told Schierholtz.
Schierholtz’s attorney Derek Ewin said that aside from this one incident, which nobody was excusing, Schierholtz has been an outstanding person who has had a positive impact on his community.
More than 30 people wrote letters to the court in support of Schierholtz, Ewin said, including many people who he knew because he used to coach high school baseball.
Ewin said he believed that the district attorney’s office took the case seriously and did not go light on his client, but he believed the plea agreement was fair.
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