Brian Romeike, a 10-year employee of the Hermiston School District, was fired earlier this week in the wake of an incident that has him facing a felony hit-and-run charge in Washington.

Romeike, 51, worked as the district’s facilities supervisor and earned a salary of $70,000 per year, not including benefits.

Interim Superintendent Wade Smith said in an email, “Brian Romeike's last day of employment with the district was on Tuesday. We wish him the best of luck in his future endeavors and thank him for his 10 years of service and positive impact he made on our facilities and campuses over that time.”

Romeike was arrested early in the morning of Nov. 2 after he led police on a low-speed chase from Richland to Hermiston. Police say he was involved in a crash that injured a  Richland woman when Romeike ran a red light and crashed his 2003 yellow Hummer into a 1995 Toyota Corolla at 4:35 a.m.

Blandina Dutra, 59, was treated at Kadlec Medical Center in Richland, and then transferred to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle. She was discharged Monday.

Romeike was pursued by a Benton County sheriff’s deputy, who asked for assistance from Umatilla police when the chase approached Oregon. Umatilla police, in turn, asked for assistance from Hermiston police and Romeike’s vehicle was stopped by a spike strip at the intersection of Punkin Center Road and Highway 395.

Romeike was arrested for misdemeanor driving under the influence of intoxicants and attempting to elude police in a vehicle, a felony. 

Hit and run with injury is a felony in Washington, but Richland will have to wait until the case in Oregon concludes.


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