Los Angeles

Trip to Hospital Turns Into Pursuit When Patient Steals Ambulance

The pursuit came to an end near the 405 and 605 freeways

A patient commandeered an ambulance Wednesday morning and led police on an unusual pursuit that came to an end off a Southern California freeway.

The ambulance was bound for a hospital when its driver pulled over to assist an emergency medical technician with a patient who had been transported from the Cypress area and had threatened the technician with a pair of shears. The patient apparently jumped into the driver's seat when both the driver and EMT were out of the ambulance, according to Westminster police. 

Officers located the stolen ambulance a few blocks away, but the driver took off before the pursuit came to an end near the 405 and 605 freeways. The driver surrendered on the side of road and was taken into custody.

Aerial video showed the ambulance parked at the edge of a wooded area just before a freeway exit ramp. No serious injuries were reported.

Details about the initial medical call were not immediately available. 

A similar pursuit played out in October 2014 when a patient jumped into the cab of an ambulance and led officers on a pursuit the ended with a crash west of downtown Los Angeles.

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