Niles man gets prison time for fleeing police

Published 12:39 pm Monday, February 12, 2024

NILES — A Niles man who fled police and failed to stop at the scene of a property damage accident was also sentenced to prison.

Bruce Richard Sater, 70, of Niles, pleaded guilty to third degree fleeing police and failing to stop at the scene of a property damage accident and was sentenced to 12 months to five years in prison with credit for 87 days served for fleeing police and credit for 87 days served on the failure to stop charge. He must pay $248 in fines and costs.

The incident occurred Sept. 5, 2023 in Niles Township. Sater hit a parked car and then fled from police.

French said Sater’s past record dates back to when he was 17 and has resulted in him having a high prior record score when his guidelines are calculated. He noted that Sater has been sober for 19 years but still drives poorly. He said his client knows he can no longer drive.

“I made bad decisions,” Sater said. “I do not do drugs or drink alcohol, I just make bad decisions.”

Judge Smith said Sater shouldn’t blame his actions in this incident on getting old. “I’m not sure what getting old has to do with this conduct,” she said. “You hit a parked car and you fled police because you were driving without a license. You went to prison for fleeing police in 2019.”

“You were driving that day to get cigarettes and that’s a bad decision there,” she added. “Then you made it a whole lot worse by running from police. It’s not about getting older. You have a long record and you should know better. Nothing has changed in your criminal career. Here you put yourself, the police and others in danger.”