Driver Takes Rooftop Water Break After 100-MPH Pursuit

The pursuit began in the Palmdale area before heading south onto streets in Hollywood

The driver of an SUV who led police on a 30-mile pursuit at speeds over 100 mph held police in a standoff for hours Monday on the rooftop of a Culver City apartment complex before surrendering.

The pursuit began about midday with a report of a possible drive-by shooting in Newhall and ended about 5 p.m. at an apartment complex in the 9600 block of Lucerne Avenue in Culver City.

The driver led police on a dangerous chase — driving on the wrong side of streets and narrowly missing pedestrians in crosswalks — before ditching the SUV in a cul-de-sac and running.

He managed to get onto a rooftop, walked around and even took drinks from a water supply pipe.

The man then wedged a board against a rooftop access door and placed cinder blocks in front of it to prevent it from opening.

Residents in the Culver City neighborhood were told by police to stay away.

"We had to leave the building because someone entered with a gun," said one woman who couldn't enter her home for hours.

Another resident said he wasn't aware of the situation until he saw it on TV, and then went out and saw. 

Neighbors moved as quickly as they could, knowing the man could be armed.

"I saw him actually coming over the fence right in front of my window," Tom Mawson told NBC4.

The driver had been on the Antelope Valley (14) and Golden State (5) freeways at midday and nearly clipped several vehicles at speeds around 100 mph.

Aerial video showed the driver swerving across lanes and driving on the shoulder of the southbound 5 Freeway before transitioning on the southbound 170 Freeway in the San Fernando Valley.

The driver then got off onto Vermont Avenue in the Hollywood area, speeding the wrong way on several busy streets and narrowly missing pedestrians and vehicles at intersections.

At 1:20 p.m., the driver reversed into a covered parking area before exiting back onto the street in front of a Los Angeles Police Department patrol vehicle.

The pursuit continued west on streets bordering the 10 Freeway and into Culver City.

John Cádiz Klemack contributed to this report.

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