A man accused by police of stealing a car and driving it into an officer in Historic South-Central later crashed the vehicle and was taken to the hospital in critical condition, Los Angeles police said Monday.
The man, whose name has not been released, was accused by his mother of stealing her car on Sunday, according to LAPD spokesman Mike Lopez. The woman called police later that night, around 7:10 p.m., and she told them she saw the car in a parking lot in the 2300 block of Wall Street, police said.
Officers approached the red four-door sedan, which they believed to be empty, but the suspect was inside, according to Lopez.
The man drove toward an officer who jumped out of the way, police said.
More than four hours later, at around 11:30 p.m., the driver was involved in a three-car crash at East Washington Boulevard and South Central Avenue. The drivers of the other two cars suffered minor injuries, but the suspect was trapped in the car and had to be extricated by firefighters, then taken to a hospital in critical condition, authorities said.
Video from the scene shows the suspect’s vehicle pulled up to the curb and stopped in front of the Tacos Galiván fast food restaurant. The car’s hood crumpled against a post as firefighters worked to remove it.
Although the Los Angeles Fire Department said in a statement that the “crash was reported to be at the end of a police pursuit,” police denied this, saying the crash was completely separate from the investigation of the stolen vehicle earlier in the night. evening.
“It was not a chase. They were wrong,” Lopez said.
Police arrested the driver on suspicion of assault with a deadly weapon for allegedly driving the car towards an officer. He was also a suspect in a separate, unrelated robbery, Lopez said.