See more of the story

A driver who fled Minnesota has pleaded guilty after running over and killing a woman in St. Paul.

Cristian H. Cuellar, 23, of Rose­ville entered his plea in Ramsey County District Court last week in connection with the Jan. 28 crash at E. 7th and Eichenwald streets that killed Susan Harlan, 66, of St. Paul.

Harlan was hit just before 6 p.m. and was taken by emergency personnel to Regions Hospital, where she was pronounced dead an hour later.

Cuellar pleaded guilty to criminal vehicle homicide and is scheduled to be sentenced on Jan. 14. He entered what is called a "straight plea," according to the County Attorney's Office, meaning there is no agreement between the defense and the prosecution on the terms of his sentence.

According to the criminal complaint:

A caller to 911 saw the van hit Harlan as she was crossing the street and then drive off. Police soon located the van at E. 6th Street and Johnson Parkway. Inside was Cuellar's wallet with photo identification.

Nearly four weeks later, Cuellar and his attorney visited police headquarters. He told police that he was returning from a job and dropping off co-workers when one passenger said "watch out," the complaint read.

Cuellar said he thought he had struck a man and was too afraid to call 911, choosing to flee to Kansas once he learned about what happened from news reports. However, he returned to Minnesota, telling authorities he didn't want to be on the run.