A man suspected of driving a car that had just been stolen in Chula Vista led National City police on a chase in which he smashed into parked cars, then tried running away, but was quickly caught Wednesday morning in San Diego, authorities said.
The incident started about 9:45 a.m., when a man called Chula Vista police to report that he saw someone steal his car from a parking lot on Third Avenue north of Palomar Street, Chula Vista police Lt. Gino Grippo said. Police put out notice for officers to keep an eye out for the car, a 2003 Mitsubishi Lancer.
A National City police officer headed to Interstate 5, thinking he might find the car headed north on the nearby freeway, National City police Sgt. Thomas Wilkins said.
The instinct paid off. Wilkins said the officer soon spotted the stolen car on the freeway, kept an eye on it and called for backup. When other officers arrived, closer to the Logan Heights area, police tried to pull over the car. Instead, the driver took off, Wilkins said.
The chase landed on San Diego surface streets, where Wilkins said the car hit other cars, including parked vehicles. At some point, the stolen Lancer also struck a National City police vehicle.
The car chase ended on 26th Street, where the driver ran off, Wilkins said. The sergeant said police caught and arrested the suspect at 26th and E Street, in Golden Hill.
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