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Suspect is Apprehended After a Pursuit Across Los Angeles and Orange Counties Ends in a Crash and Gunfire
Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department officers opened fire during a risky chase of a driver who stole multiple vehicles and led law enforcement on a chase through Orange and L.A. counties before colliding with them at a petrol station in Hacienda Heights.
According to Cpt. John Radius of the Fullerton Police Department, at around 4:45 p.m., officers tried to pull over a black Honda Civic for a traffic infraction, but the driver wouldn’t surrender. Later, at a residential complex in Anaheim along West Coronet Avenue, Fullerton Police Department caught up with the subject under pursuit. According to Cpt. Radius, the suspect stole a white van from the area, drove up behind police cars, and then took off again.
The owner of a van that has been stolen in a frenetic chase says, “I need that for work.” As the pursuit entered Los Angeles County, deputies from the LASD assumed control. The man fled the van in Whittier before running through the backdoor of a house with a family inside. The homeowner tried to stop the suspect as he emerged from the house, stole the family’s white pickup truck, and smashed it into their fence while Sky5 flew overhead.
Andres Benitez, who resides in the residence with his mother and father, said John Fenoglio of KTLA that he seized a knife as soon as the suspect entered the building. “I warned him, ‘Get out of the home, man, or I’ll stab you.'”
The only thing I wanted him to do was to leave the house immediately, but he actually caused a lot more harm than that. “Man, I wouldn’t have allowed him to take any further steps if I had known he would have done all that the moment I saw him,” stated Benitez.
Following the white pickup’s takeoff, the suspect accelerated to 80 mph on public streets, collided with other vehicles, drove on the opposite side of the road, crossed center dividers, and ran red lights. The motorist turned into a cul-de-sac in La Habra while deputies followed him. Despite appearing to be in a tight spot, he quickly turned the truck around, swerved through a number of deputy cruisers, and returned to the surface streets.
Sparks were spotted emerging from under the truck at the end of the chase in Hacienda Heights. Before coming to a stop in front of a gas station, where police smashed the car, the driver plowed into a number of cars. When the driver tried to turn around, deputies encircled him and opened fire.
He was taken out of the pickup vehicle, appeared to be able to stand up, and was then taken into custody. The suspect was then loaded onto a gurney, taken to the hospital in an ambulance, and discharged. Unknown whether any deputies or policemen were hurt in the chase. Additionally unknown is the suspect’s state of health.