Driver in Custody After High-Speed Pursuit Ends in Downey

Man dances, pumps fist while swerving through traffic

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    NEWSLETTERS

    A freeway pursuit that started in the San Fernando Valley ended in Downey after a driver traveled at high speeds in and out of traffic -- visibly clapping and pumping his fist in the air. Kathy Vara reports for the NBC4 News at Noon on Sept. 7, 2012.

    A man wanted on suspicion of reckless driving led police on a high-speed pursuit along the southbound 101 and 5 freeways before exiting in the Downey area and eventually giving himself up to authorities.

    Richard French, LAPD spokesperson, said the pursuit began about 10:30 a.m. after officers witnessed the man driving recklessly near the intersection of Ventura and Sepulveda boulevards.

    The driver of the black Mercedes C-Class then led officers south on the 101 Freeway before merging onto the southbound 5 Freeway.

    Raw Video: Pursuit Driver Dodges Big Rigs

    [LA] Raw Video: Mercedes Benz Driver Leads Police on Freeway Pursuit
    A driver in a black Mercedes Benz waved out the window and clapped his hands as led police on a pursuit from the Sherman Oaks area to Downey. Raw Aerial Video

    Aerial video showed the driver clapping and dancing while swerving through traffic (pictured, below).

    Around 10:49 a.m., the driver was on Lakewood Boulevard in the Downey area. At an intersection, he drove over a median and started making donuts with his vehicle in the nearby residential neighborhood.

    Rob Cain, a resident of the neighborhood, said this wasn't the first time he saw the driver traveling at high speed.

    "I've seen him a couple of times before," said Cain. "I haven't paid a lot of attention to him other than seeing him in his car going fast."

    At 10:51 a.m., the driver stopped, got out of the car and lay down on the ground in the 9200 block of Garnish Drive (map).

    "We saw various violations, but definitely the most serious ones include reckless driving, excessive speed and evading (police)," French said, adding that the driver exceeded 80 mph.

    A woman exited a home, walked down a driveway and also lay down on the pavement.

    By 10:58 a.m., police had taken the man into custody.

    The woman was handcuffed and police were seen talking to her as she sat on a curb.


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