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Man Who Led Police on 5-Hour Chase Arrested

October 11, 1993|MIGUEL BUSTILLO | TIMES STAFF WRITER

The suspect who stole a charter bus in San Diego and led police on a reckless five-hour chase on 10 freeways was finally arrested after he crashed into a house in Brentwood, confronted by law enforcement officers on a dead-end street, police said Sunday.

The suspect, whose identity police said they had yet to determine, drove the bus from San Diego to Burbank to Malibu, then through the San Fernando Valley and into the Westside before being cornered by California Highway Patrol officers on Waterford Street.

He was booked on suspicion of attempted murder for allegedly attempting to run over a police officer with the bus, and was being held at the Los Angeles Police Department's West Los Angeles Division jail on $500,000 bail, police said.

The suspect, wearing camouflage clothing, stole a Goodall's Charter Bus Service bus from a San Diego bus terminal shortly before noon Saturday. Six hours later, the owner of the bus company spotted the man driving south on Interstate 805 in San Diego, and notified police from his cellular phone.

For the next five hours, switching from freeway to freeway, and cutting through residential streets at speeds of up to 80 m.p.h, the man eluded police, said CHP spokesman Chris Burch.

The man was arrested about 10:45 p.m. Saturday when he crashed into a house. The occupants were not harmed.

Before crashing into the house, the man rammed two police cars, "crushing one like an accordion", and attempted to run over several officers, who tried to shoot the man in self-defense, Burch said. Four officers were slightly injured, he said.

Police said they were checking fingerprint records trying to identify the man. Although he was carrying a birth certificate at his arrest, "he's been very evasive," Burch said. "He has given us several names. We're not sure who he is."

Police said the man is expected to be arraigned Tuesday.

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