Suspect Takes Off In CHP Patrol Car; High Speed Chase Ends In Orange County

A chase that made its way through three counties ended after a man stopped by the California Highway Patrol in Riverside County got into the patrol car and took off, carjacked a vehicle in Temecula, then sped into San Diego County where he stole another car, authorities said, before driving north into Orange County.

No injuries were immediately reported after the suspect, later identified as Adolfo Makana Moreno Jr., 20,  pulled over and was taken into custody around 11:30 a.m. Monday near San Juan Capistrano, CHP Officer Mike Lassig said. The recovered CHP vehicle had all its equipment, including weapons, he said.

A peaceful ending earlier today to a wild pursuit that went through Riverside County, San Diego County and finally came to an end in OC’s Mission Viejo. CHP says the suspect stole a CHP vehicle at one point before abandoning it for another car @CBSLA @KCBSKCALDesk

— Chris Ercoli (@CErcoliCBS2KCAL) August 5, 2019

A CHP officer tried to pull over the suspect

just along the southbound 15 Freeway, just north of Murrieta Hot Springs Road at about 9:45 a.m. for riding a motorcycle without a helmet, Lassig said.

The man took off, with the CHP officer in pursuit. The officer and suspect stopped in the De Luz area, which is just inside San Diego County.

The man ran from the scene, with the CHP officer in foot pursuit, but the suspect managed to get into the CHP vehicle and drive away, Lassig said. Law enforcement took up the pursuit, monitoring and sometimes actively chasing, often at high speeds.

Moreno crashed into a concrete curb on Jefferson Avenue, just north of Rancho California Road in Temecula, and abandoned the stolen patrol vehicle, CHP officials said. He took off on foot once again, carjacked the driver of a Lexus and continued to evade arrest.

The chase went on surface streets as well as the 15 Freeway into San Diego County. Moreno was pursued to the 5 Freeway, where he was involved in a 4-vehicle, non-injury crash at Manchester Avenue, officials said. He then exited the Lexus, found an unlocked Toyota Prius with a set of keys inside and continued fleeing north on the 5 to Orange County, they said.

The chase ended when the suspect pulled over and was arrested, Lassig said. He was arrested on suspicion of reckless evading of a police officer, battery, vehicle theft, carjacking, and failing to stop after a traffic collision.

The CHP’s  Temecula, Oceanside and San Juan Capistrano offices were involved in the chase. Riverside County sheriff’s ground and air units also participated.

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Suspect takes off in CHP patrol car; high-speed chase ends in Orange County