About $5,000 worth of diesel fuel was recovered from a stolen box truck after its driver slammed into a freeway barrier Monday at the end of a pursuit east of downtown Los Angeles.
The box truck, reported stolen about 200 miles north in Lemoore, was carrying about 1,650 gallons of diesel when sheriff's deputies began the pursuit on the southbound 5 Freeway north of Los Angeles. The California Highway Patrol joined the pursuit after a report of an erratic driver near Magic Mountain theme park.
The pursuit reached speeds around 80 mph as it entered the San Fernando Valley, and the driver made several quick lane changes. The driver squeezed between traffic and a freeway wall near the 5 and 10 freeways before careening on a dirt embankment and crashing head-on into a concrete barrier in Boyle Heights.
The crash dislodged about eight feet of concrete retaining wall.
The driver tried to hide between trash bins, but was arrested. Deputies found five large marked containers of diesel inside the Ford box truck.
The driver was identified as 27-year-old Jose Ramirez, of Pacoima. He was booked on suspicion of evading a police officer, unlawful taking/driving of a vehicle and grand theft.