Pickup Truck Driver Surrenders After Short Pursuit in Whittier

A short pursuit ended peacefully in the Whittier area Wednesday evening after a truck driver pulled over and surrendered to authorities. 

Police identified the driver as 24-year-old Jessie Barraza.

They said Barraza had used a box cutter to rob a minimart in Whittier before he led officers on the a high-speed turned slow-speed chase along surface streets in the city. 

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The chase started around 6:30 p.m. and lasted for about 30 minutes.

At times, Barraza was seen driving on the wrong side of the road, narrowly missing pedestrians along surface streets. 

At one point, the suspect drove through a drive-thru car wash to elude authorities.

He surrendered in the area of Pickering Avenue and Mar Vista Street around 7 p.m. 

Spectators watched the action in awe. One group even drove behind police, following the chase themselves.

"The helicopters were on top of us, we could hear them talking, telling him to surrender -- it was crazy," Genevie Good said.

The chase later downshifted to a slow roll before the suspect surrendered and was taken into custody.

"I'm thinking, don't these guys ever learn? They always get caught in Whittier. Whittier is not the place to come if you're going to do this kind of thing." Chris Canales said.

Barraza was booked and charged with felony evading and driving on a suspended license, said the Whittier Police Department. His bail has been set at $75,000.

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