Watertown Man Sentenced to Seven Months in Prison after OWI, High Speed Chase

A Watertown man will spend just over seven months in prison for leading authorities on a drunken high-speed chase. According to the criminal complaint, deputies observed a motorist crossing the centerline on Highway O as the vehicle was coming toward their squad car. Gerald Eckes refused to stop when the deputy tried to pull him over in the Town of Lebanon and a pursuit began that reached speeds in excess of 120-miles-per hour. His blood alcohol level was over three times the legal limit. The 43-year-old pleaded “guilty” to a felony charge of Fleeing and misdemeanor OWI-4th. Eckes will also have to pay $4500 in fines or he’ll have to spend an additional 90 days in jail. In addition, he had his license revoked for three years followed by three years with an ignition interlock device in his vehicle. Incidentally, Eckes was arrested once before in the early 90’s by Deputy Todd Nehls following a similar chase.