A father of six who was killed during a Nov. 16, 2021, pursuit in the Gardnerville Ranchos could be heard on the phone pleading with the Oregon parolee behind the wheel to pull over, according to victim testimony offered on Monday.
John Schulze was a passenger in the Jeep driven by Blake Edward Thacker for a quick ride to the 7-Eleven, a prosecutor said on Monday.
Thacker, 31, was sentenced to the maximum of 8-20 years in prison for attempting to elude causing Schulze’s death.
During Monday’s sentencing hearing, Thacker remained quiet until after victim impact testimony, when he blurted out that his family had been victimized, as well, after his attorney asked if some of his supporters could speak.
Under Nevada law, victim impact testimony is taken last, and is reserved for relatives of the victim.
Shulze’s wife testified the couple met in middle school and had six children.
“I don’t know this world without my husband,” she said. “Your selfish ways destroyed a life. I will never forget that you stole my husband. I don’t think I’ll ever be me again.”
The woman who was driving the vehicle Thacker hit said she witnessed Schulze, who was a neighbor, flung from the Jeep.
“That scene has been replayed over and over again in my head,” she said. Because she lost her vehicle in the wreck, she had to quit college and other activities was participating in before the collision.
Thacker absconded from parole in Oregon and was being sought by deputies for two weeks before he drove up behind a patrol vehicle on Nov. 16.
When Thacker realized he’d been spotted, he made a U-turn before ducking onto Robin, where he rolled the Jeep before being spotted by the deputy, who tried to take him into custody.
Thacker drove off onto Tillman from Patricia where he hit the other vehicle.
“I don’t know if all the shattered hearts will ever mend,” Schulze’s mother-in-law testified. “There was no family Thanksgiving and no family Christmas.”
She said her daughter was on the phone to Schulze and could hear him yelling at Thacker to pull over.
Prosecutor Patrick Ferguson called the incident the “worst case scenario.”
“This is why we have laws against running from the police,” he said.
Ferguson said Thacker was a 13-time felon.
Thacker’s prison term was ordered to be served consecutive to whatever prison time he has remaining in Oregon.
He was given credit for 126 days time served and ordered to pay $3,689.13 in restitution, with $2,389.13 going to Schulze’s family to pay for his cremation and another $1,300 to the other driver for totaling her vehicle.