Driver Allegedly Shot CHP Officer, Fled in High-Speed Pursuit

A California Highway Patrol officer was shot during a traffic stop early Friday morning in West Covina, before the driver led other officers on a 30-minute pursuit that ended in a dirt lot in Fontana, according to the CHP.

The shooting occurred around 1:40 a.m. in a parking lot near Sunset Avenue and West Garvey Street, after officers pulled over the driver of a Cadillac Escalade.

As officers approached the car, the driver opened fire, wounding one of the two officers. according to Rodrigo Jimenez of CHP's Baldwin Park Division.  

"I still don't know why the suspect reacted the way he did," said Officer Jimenez.

Both officers returned fire, and the suspect was also wounded, according to Jimenez.

The wounded officer, identified as a 40 year old with six years at the CHP,  was transported to USC Medical Center where he was in stable condition.

After the shooting, the driver fled in the Escalade and officers from the West Covina Police Department pursued the SUV for nearly an hour before to a dirt field in Fontana, where it appparently became bogged down, according to investigators.

Video shows a man standing outside the SUV before a police K9  jumped on him and took him to the ground and officers handcuffed him.  He incurred bite wounds in addition to the earlier shooting wound and was hospitalized.

It was not immediately clear why he was initially pulled over by CHP.


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Early on, it was reported that a woman may also have been in the Escalade at the time of the traffic stop, but when the pursuit ended in Fontana, only the male driver was in the SUV.  Authorities later said it was not certain there had ever been a passenger in the vehicle.

As investigators examined the Escalade in Fontana, what appeared to be a sticker for the Uber ride sharing service  was visible on the windshield.  It was not immediately clear if the driver had actually worked as an Uber driver.

In response to a request for further information, Uber issued a written statement.

"This is a deplorable and tragic situation.  Our heartfelt thoughts are with the injured officer and his family as he recovers.

"We have been in contact with the California Highway Patrol and stand ready to provice any information that wil aid in their investigation."   

CHP identified the suspect driver as a 30 year old, but has not released his name.

NBC4's Kevin LaBeach contributed to this report.

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