A woman driving a stolen truck led police on a short chase through Barrio Logan Friday that ended with officers firing shots at her and the suspect crashing into a pole.
San Diego Police Department (SDPD) officers descended on Cesar E. Chavez Parkway and Main Street, near Harbor Drive, just after 7 a.m. The location is near the popular Northgate Gonzalez Markets, the Barrio Logan Trolley Station and the Coronado Bridge.
SDPD Capt. Brian Ahern said the ordeal began on Harbor Drive after the suspect, Jessica Turner, 32, stole a 2010 Chevy Silverado pickup truck near the San Diego Convention Center.
The truck, marked with the logo, "Neal Electric," belonged to a contractor who parked the pickup and left for a moment. When he returned, the truck was gone.
As Turner took off in the stolen truck, Ahern said she plowed into a Convention Center worker who was in a golf cart. That bystander was not seriously injured, police said.
The contractor and another worker hopped into a black pickup truck and followed Turner.
"They found the vehicle as the suspect was traveling eastbound on Harbor Drive. And they called the police," Ahern explained.
An officer with the Harbor Police Department began pursuing Turner.
As the suspect got to Cesar E. Chavez Parkway and Harbor Drive, Ahern said two SDPD officers in two separate cars arrived at the scene.
The suspect turned southbound on Cesar E. Chavez Parkway from Harbor Drive with the officers in pursuit. She made a U-turn, then a right on Harbor Drive, continuing to Samson Street, where she made another right.
While on Sampson Street, the driver stopped momentarily, SDPD Lt. Todd Griffin said. Two officers exited their patrol vehicles.
At this point, Turner made a U-turn and was driving directly towards officers. One officer dived into the open driver's side door just before the truck collided with that side of the vehicle, Griffin said.
The officer drew his service weapon and fired "several rounds" at Turner, Griffin said.
A second officer fired several more rounds at the driver as the truck passed by. No officers were hurt in the shooting.
The rounds missed Turner.
Turner did not stop. She continued onto a sidewalk and down Samson Street, Griffin said. Officers jumped back into their vehicles and continued to pursue her as she turned.
As she made a right turn onto Cesar E. Chavez Parkway, Turner lost control and hit a traffic signal pole connected to the Metropolitan Transit System’s (MTS) trolley service. The crash happened near the Cesar E. Chavez Campus and Barrio Logan Trolley Station. The broken pole also hit a nearby Cintas delivery truck.
Turner got out of the truck and tried to run. She fell.
Officers took her down and arrested her.
At the crash site, NBC 7 news crews spotted a San Diego police patrol SUV with its passenger window shattered and two bullet holes in the windshield. At this point, it is unclear if officers fired shots from inside that patrol vehicle.
Witness Rose Santos told NBC 7 she and her boyfriend saw the pursuit on Harbor Drive, as Turner fled and officers fired at the truck. After the crash, Santos said she and her boyfriend saw the driver jump out of the truck. Police chased the driver on foot, tackling Turner to the ground.
About a half-mile away, at Samson Street and Harbor Drive, police officers roped off a second scene where they were collecting shell casings and other evidence. There, SDPD Chief Shelley Zimmerman was being briefed.
Meanwhile, trolley service at the nearby Barrio Logan Trolley Station was temporarily halted. MTS said it would operate a bus bridge on the UC San Diego Blue Line between 12th Street and Imperial Avenue and 8th Street. At around 9 a.m., MTS said UC San Diego Blue Line trains were single-tracking between Barrio Logan and 8th Street and riders could expect delays between 15 to 20 minutes.
Ahern said Turner suffered a minor injury to her nose from the crash with the traffic pole and was treated at a local hospital.
The investigation is ongoing. It is unclear how many shots were fired in the officer-involved shooting.
Ahern said Turner told police she is new to San Diego, arriving only a few weeks ago from Colorado.
Turner was booked into San Diego County Jail on charges of assault with a deadly weapon, vehicle theft and felony evading arrest causing injury.
No other information was available.