Dramatic police chase through streets of south LA

Posted: Updated:
By Tami Hoey By Tami Hoey

LOS ANGELES, Ca. -- There was high drama on the streets of south Los Angeles Wednesday night, as three law enforcement agencies pursued a a stolen van for more than half an hour.

The dramatic chase started shortly before 8:30 p.m., as the driver of a white Chevy Astrovan was spotted speeding down the wrong side of the street, with its headlights off.

At one point, the van trailed behind a police patrol car before racing around him.

The LAPD, California Highway Patrol, and L.A. County Sheriff’s Department tracked the driver on the roads and in the air, as he sped down city streets and weaved onto sidewalks, narrowly missing other vehicles and pedestrians.

As the chase continued, the driver was seen making wide U-turns to evade officers.

A first PIT maneuver failed to stop the driver. (A PIT maneuver is a "precision immobilization technique,"  a pursuit tactic by which a pursuing car can force a fleeing car to abruptly turn sideways, causing the driver to lose control and stop.)

Another officer pitted the vehicle and laid down a spike strip, but the suspect, now driving with at least three flat tires, kept on going, with a trail of sparks spitting from the van.

The suspect even reportedly hit a dog during the pursuit. That dog reportedly survived.

A short time later, another PIT maneuver managed to bring the van to a stop, and it was surrounded by patrol cars and officers.

Two people, a male driver and a female passenger, exited the vehicle and laid on the street before being taken into custody.