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Man dies after police chase him across 55 Freeway in Santa Ana

August 28, 2013|By Jeremiah Dobruck
  • Map shows the approximate location where a man fleeing police ran across the 55 Freeway in Santa Ana, according to authorities. He stopped breathing during a scuffle with officers and died at a hospital, police said.
Map shows the approximate location where a man fleeing police ran across… (Google Maps )

A Costa Mesa man who led police on a foot chase Sunday across the 55 Freeway in Santa Ana died after he suddenly stopped breathing during a scuffle with officers, Santa Ana police said.

Raymond Runge, 44, died at Western Medical Center in Santa Ana on Monday morning, Santa Ana Cpl. Anthony Bertagna said Tuesday. The Orange County coroner's office did not report an exact time or cause of death.

Officers were responding to an unrelated call at Hotel Terrace near the 55 when they saw Runge running without shoes through a parking lot and yelling, Bertagna said.

Shortly before 1 a.m. Sunday, Runge ran up an embankment next to the freeway and stopped at an overpass, where officers feared he would jump, according to police.

But when the officers approached, Runge ran onto the freeway, crossing the southbound and northbound lanes until he returned to the southbound side and lay down in the carpool lane, Bertagna said.

"They attempt to detain him, and the fight is on," Bertagna told the Daily Pilot.

During a scuffle with police, Runge stopped breathing, according to the corporal, who did not know the extent of force used by officers but said they did not use their guns or stun guns.

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Dobruck writes for Times Community News.

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