Driver held after hitting scooter rider in California chase
SAN CLEMENTE, Calif. (AP) — A driver who may have been suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder ran over a scooter rider and led police on a chase through Southern California Thursday before he was arrested after a 45-minute freeway standoff, authorities said.
Karl Flores, 34, was taken into custody on southbound Interstate 5 near Camp Pendleton in San Diego County, according to the California Highway Patrol. He was bitten by a police dog and treated at a hospital, authorities said.
Flores was a military veteran who may have been suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder, CHP officials said.
The chase, which jammed the freeway for several hours, began about 11 a.m. in Culver City near Los Angeles when police began pursuing a car for a traffic violation and because they suspected it might be stolen, police said.
A short time later, the red Honda Civic was in the Playa del Rey neighborhood of Los Angeles when it struck a scooter rider, who landed on the hood, smashed the windshield, then fell and was run over by the car.
He suffered non-life threatening injuries and was expected to recover, police and fire officials said.
The chase continued, during which police cars bumped the Honda four times and spun it around. But each time the driver was able to recover and speed off even as pieces of the vehicle, including the bumper, flew off.
The chase moved through Orange County, and, after more than two hours, the driver ran out of gas and pulled over onto the shoulder of Interstate 5 in San Diego County, CHP officials said.
Flores was arrested nearly an hour later.