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Man gets rider for Bannock crime spree, scheduled for Bingham court appearance

Crime Watch

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POCATELLO — A Pocatello man was sent on a rider for a May crime spree that originally saw him facing up to 12 felony charges.

Ronald Ray Hymas, 30, reached a plea agreement with the Bannock County Prosecutor’s Office in November. As part of the agreement, he entered guilty pleas for grand theft and two counts of possession of a stolen bank card. In exchange, two grand theft charges and three possession of a stolen bank card charges were dismissed, and another four felony charges were never filed.

RELATED | Pocatello man faces 11 felonies stemming from string of vehicle thefts, burglaries

For the felonies to which Hymas pleaded guilty, he was given a rider, with concurrent underlying sentences of four to five and four to eight years, by 6th District Judge Rick Carnaroli at a sentencing hearing Thursday.

A rider program is where a judge sends a person to prison for up to a year to undergo different treatment programs. When the inmate has completed the program, the judge can then decide to send them back to prison to complete their time or release them on probation.

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Prior to sentencing him, Carnaroli addressed Hymas’ year which included, according to prosecuting attorney Jason Stanley, 19 total felony charges filed.

“Your record is troubling,” Carnaroli said. … “You went on a real spree here, and you did hurt a lot of people.”

Stanley said, “on several levels, (Hymas) is a risk to society,” and agreed with the Idaho Department of Corrections’ assessment that Hymas is not a viable candidate for probation at this time.

The crime spree that both Stanley and Carnaroli addressed began in April, when Hymas stole a vehicle in Bingham County and, during a high-speed chase, crashed the stolen vehicle into a canal.

Ronald Ray Hymas, stolen vehicle in canal following chase
Courtesy Bingham County Jail and Blackfoot Police Department

RELATED | Man crashes into Blackfoot canal during high-speed chase

After being arrested for grand theft and attempting to elude officers, Hymas spent one week in jail before he was released on his own recognizance.

One month later, he was arrested in Pocatello after being connected to a series of vehicle burglaries, in which he stole items from several cars. Among the items, Hymas admitted to stealing were credit and ATM cards, which he then used to make multiple purchases well in excess of $100 each.

Before handing out his sentencing, Carnaroli asked Hymas if he wished to comment.

Hymas asserted that having just spent around eight months in jail, he is willing and able to make necessary corrections in his lifestyle.

“I am ready to take accountability for the things that I have done,” he said. “I do feel terrible for the people that I have hurt.”

Hymas also said that he is ready to pay any restitution required by the court “in full,” even if that means finding multiple jobs to do so.

“A lot of people sit in that chair and say they are going to make it right and pay their restitution, and they don’t have the ability or the willingness to pay for it once it’s ordered,” Carnaroli responded.

The prosecution was granted a 60-day window in which it must complete and file a restitution request. Restitution, in this case, will include payment for the vehicle crashed into a canal, as well as all items burglarized, including those that are part of charges not filed.

Due to a restitution amount Carnaroli expects to be large, he waived fees to cover the cost of Hymas’ defense. Hymas was ordered to pay a total of $1,491 in other fees and fines, as well as the $100 cost for his DNA to be collected and cataloged.

If Hymas fails to complete the rider program he will have to serve his underlying prison sentences of four to eight years.

While this sentence satisfies the crimes in Bannock County, Hymas must now appear in the Bingham County Courthouse. There, District Judge Darren Simpson will sentence him for attempting to flee an officer and for possession of a stolen bank card.

Hymas is scheduled for a sentencing hearing in Bingham on Jan. 31.