police chase

Driver Pleads Not Guilty in Wild Two-Hour Chase From Downtown LA to Orange County

Luis Silvas, 33, was charged last week with one count each of carjacking, assault on a peace officer and fleeing a pursuing peace officer.

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A man pleaded not guilty Monday in connection with a nearly two-hour police pursuit from downtown Los Angeles to Orange County that ended when officers repeatedly rammed the car and left the driver with no place to go on a Lakewood street.

Luis Silvas, 33, was charged last week with one count each of carjacking, assault on a peace officer and fleeing a pursuing peace officer. He pleaded not guilty Monday to three felony counts.

Superior Court Judge Victoria B. Wilson rejected the defense's request to release Silvas on his own recognizance. The judge ordered the defendant to remain behind bars in lieu of $150,000 bail while awaiting a hearing Dec. 10 in a downtown Los Angeles courtroom to determine if there is sufficient evidence to allow the case against him to proceed to trial.

Silva was arrested Nov. 19 following the police pursuit and standoff.

The chase began at about 12:45 p.m. that day when Los Angeles Police Department officers tried to stop the car, which had been reported stolen in Downey, near Hill and 25th streets, according to the LAPD. The driver refused to yield, heading onto the southbound Santa Ana (5) Freeway and leading officers on an erratic chase that at times went onto the wrong side of the road both on the freeway and streets.

Officers attempted several PIT maneuvers and deployed at least one spike strip on a street before the chase ended with a standoff in Lakewood.  Authorities fired non-lethal rounds into the car, shattering a rear window, during the standoff. 

The driver eventually got out of the car, boxed into by patrol SUVs, and surrendered at about 3:30 p.m.

Copyright CNS - City News Service
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