An attempt to pull over a possible DUI driver in Vista turned into a pursuit across North County freeways that ended with deputies shooting the suspect after he exited his vehicle.
San Diego County Sheriff's Department (SDSO) deputies tried to pull the driver over at around 8:45 p.m. before he sped off and got on State Route 78.
California Highway Patrol officers also joined the pursuit that reached speeds in excess of 100 mph.
At one point during the pursuit, the driver called 911 and told the dispatcher he had a loaded 9MM handgun, a female was in the car with him and he wanted to commit “suicide-by-cop," SDSO said.
The driver continued westbound at high speeds, transitioned to southbound Interstate 5 and exited at Carmel Valley Road in Del Mar Heights. He then drove off the road and became stuck in the Los Penasquitos Lagoon.
At that point, the driver exited the car and, according to SDSO, advanced on deputies. They gave verbal commands for him to stop, but when he continued to come toward them, deputies shot the driver in the upper torso.
The driver was taken into custody and transported to the hospital. Witnesses reported hearing four or five shots.
The deputies involved are a 5-year veteran and a 2-year veteran of the San Diego Sheriff’s Department.
During the pursuit, the driver stopped in Leucadia to let the woman out of his car, the SDSO said.
Deputies were in contact with the driver's sister who said her brother made suicidal threats.
Carmel Valley Road was blocked off from Via Grimaldi to Portofino Drive while authorities investigated the shooting. San Diego police officers were on scene assisting in the investigation but were not involved in the pursuit or shooting.
The San Diego Police Department Homicide unit will be investigating this Officer involved shooting per the San Diego County Officer Involved Shooting protocol.
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