SANTA FE SPRINGS (CBSLA.com) — Authorities chased an armed suspect around Monterey Park, Pico Rivera and East LA Thursday evening.
The suspect was originally wanted for allegedly stealing a car.READ MORE: Patrons of In-N-Out React to Upcoming Mandate
At one point during the pursuit, the driver stopped presumably to drop off someone he possibly carjacked.
At the culmination of the chase, back in the Downey area, the suspect jumped out of the vehicle apparently holding and firing a weapon.
A man was taken into custody at the scene, but KCAl9’s Erica Nochlin said the man in handcuffs was not the gunman. Officials said the man who was detained was taken into custody as a precaution. It was unclear if the man was associated with the suspect. Authorities said that was yet to be determined.
The carjacking suspect ran with police in quick pursuit. The suspect ran inside a restaurant located in the 9200 block of Lakewood Boulevard.
The sheriff’s department said the gunman was inside the restaurant dead. They said the suspect was dead following a deputy-involved shooting. Late Thursday, officials said a deputy was able to get off one shot striking the suspect.
Earlier in the evening, moments after the suspect ran into the restaurant, police surrounded the eatery. Several patrons were seen running out of the establishment.
It is not clear if the man was holding hostages but witnesses on the scene said there were about 20 people left inside the restaurant Chris & Pitt’s BBQ.
Several people were shown coming out of the restaurant with their hands up.
Nochlin, reporting from the scene, spoke to some of the patrons who came in contact with the suspect.
One woman, cradling her grandchild, said when the gunman came in he demanded everyone get down. He pointed his gun at the cashier and later ordered all women and children out, according to one witness.
The woman told Nochlin her daughter and husband were still inside the eatery. She said she was “terrified” for them.
Employees told her they were also concerned for several co-workers who were allegedly still inside.
The cashier told her the gunman had “odd” demands. He wanted water and medicine.
Customers told Nochlin they thought they were caught up in a robbery. They described the gunman as “nervous”
During the chase, the suspect was also seen driving on the wrong side of the road as well as driving erratically.
The pursuit was reported just before 6:50p.m.
Around 7:35 police did a PIT Maneuver to get the chase to come to a stop. The suspect’s vehicle slammed into a parked car.READ MORE: Largest Tiny Home Village In California To Serve Unhoused Community Opening In Highland Park
Sky9’s Stu Mundel said sheriff’s believed the suspect might have carjacked at least two motorists.
“This guy is going so fast, it’s hard for me to keep up,” Mundel reported. The suspect was often clocked doing 80 mph on surface streets.
The suspect– in what is believed to be an older model Toyota Camry — blazed through red lights and drove on sidewalks to avoid traffic.
The driver almost hit two other motorists head on and side swiped at least another.
At another point in the chase, the suspect missed a pedestrian by mere feet.
The chase wended through Pico Rivera ,Whittier Montery Park. East LA and Montebello.
KCAL9’s Jennifer Kastner spoke to a woman the suspect allegedly carjacked about six miles from the restaurant.
Frightened by the ordeal, and having a gun put in her face, the 22-year-old victim was grateful the suspect didn’t hurt her.
She saw the man hop over her fence to her front lawn. She heard helicopters overhead but had no idea why.
Guadalupe Zamarripa was unloading groceries from her when she said the suspect ran over and showed her he had a weapon.
By the time she could react, a teary Zamarripa said, “he already had the gun in my face … I just panicked and I dropped the keys. And I moved to the front door and that’s when I ran to the house.”
The suspect took off with her purse and groceries still in the vehicle.
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