A Tucson man will walk out of the Cochise County jail next month after completing a four-month sentence for a DUI. But what makes Randy Eugene Hohl’s case unusual is that his sentence was imposed more than eight years after he was arrested for driving on a suspended license and assaulting a sheriff’s deputy.
Hohl, then 51, was pulled over near Tombstone in May 2013 on suspicion of DUI with a suspended license. Records show he resisted arrest, and was indicted by a Cochise County grand jury later that year on seven counts, including two felony DUI charges and two charges of aggravated assault for spitting on and kicking a peace officer.
Court records show a statewide arrest warrant was issued in conjunction with the indictment. The warrant called for Hohl to post a $10,000 bond to secure his release from custody pending trial, but he would not see the inside of a Cochise County courtroom for eight years.
That is because a Pima County judge released Hohl on personal recognizance during an unrelated court hearing in March 2014 instead of having him held for transfer to the Cochise County Sheriff’s Office.
Fast forward to July 2021 when Hohl, now 59, self-surrendered to the sheriff’s office and finally stood before a Cochise County judge for arraignment on the 2013 indictment. He pleaded guilty in September to one misdemeanor for basic DUI as part of a plea agreement that dismissed all the other charges.
The sentence called for in the plea deal is four months in jail, which prosecutor Michael Powell of the Cochise County Attorney’s Office noted is actually the length of confinement called for with an aggravated DUI.
“Given that a misdemeanor DUI only requires 10 days jail with up to 9 days suspended, the four months required under the plea is substantially harsher than this plea could have been,” Powell explained, adding that another consideration for entering into the plea deal was the “significant amount of time” which had elapsed since the incident.
Judge Timothy Dickerson gave Hohl credit toward his four-month sentence for 82 days spent in custody awaiting resolution of the case since July. That puts Hohl’s release date at Nov. 11.
The court file does not explain where Hohl was for the last eight years or what prompted him to finally address the outstanding criminal charges. The two deputies involved in Hohl’s arrest in 2013 are not named in court documents, but Powell noted they were notified in advance of the plea offer.