San Diego

Reckless Driver on Ocean Beach Pier Hits 2 People, SDPD Car Before Taking Off

SDPD pursued the driver as he sped away from the pier but officers lost sight of the vehicle near W. Point Loma Avenue

Police are searching for a driver who sped onto the Ocean Beach Pier and began doing burnouts before striking two people and a police car and fleeing the scene early Tuesday. 

Several people fishing on the Ocean Beach Pier called 911 at about 1:30 a.m. when a driver in a black Acura hatchback vehicle sped down the Ocean Beach Pier, almost striking pedestrians, at what witnesses said was about 50 miles per hour.

"We all got off our chairs or else he would have swiped us for sure," Jason Ngalongaloy said.

When the car reached the end of the pier, the driver began doing spinouts. Witnesses told the San Diego Police Department the driver had a smile on his face. Then, the driver turned around and drove back along the pier towards the entrance. 

That's when the driver struck two pedestrians, SDPD Lt. Erwin Manansala said. The pedestrians received minor injuries and were treated at the scene. 

"No serious injuries to the bystanders but they were struck nonetheless," Manansala said. 

The car continued and rammed into an SDPD patrol vehicle was blocking the entrance to the pier, Manansala said. The car became stuck but after revving his engine was able to wedge the car through. The officer was not injured. 

SDPD attempted to pursue the driver but lost sight of the vehicle along W. Point Loma Avenue. 

The driver was the only person in the vehicle at the time, SDPD said. The man was described as heavy set with a beard and was wearing a white t-shirt at the time. 

Police suspect he may have been under the influence of alcohol. At minimum, the driver faces charges of assault with a deadly weapon and hit-and-run against the police vehicle, Manansala said.

He was driving a black 2005 Acura with a lowered suspension, SDPD said. The hatchback had a cracked windshield and custom wheels.   

Investigators said witnesses captured a partial plate number that they will use to attempt to locate the suspect. 

The Ocean Beach Pier is visited by about a half-million people a year. At more than 1,970 feet, the pier is the second longest on the West Coast and the longest concrete pier in the world.

No other information was available.

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