Woman, dog killed by officer after high-speed chase

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EL CAJON, Calif. -- A woman and a dog in an allegedly stolen vehicle were shot and killed by an El Cajon police officer Saturday, and three men in the vehicle were arrested following a high-speed chase that ended when the vehicle rammed into two police cars.

The incident occurred at 1:25 a.m. when El Cajon police officers observed a stolen vehicle in the 1300 block of E. Main St., El Cajon Police Lt. Frank La Haye said.

“Officers attempted to stop the vehicle and when they approached, the vehicle fled north on Second Street then onto westbound Interstate 8,'' La Haye said. “Officers pursued the vehicle with emergency lights and sirens on.''

La Haye said the red Toyota compact reached speeds of 90 mph during the pursuit.

“The vehicle exited the freeway at the West Main Street exit and continued across West Main to a cul-de-sac on South Pierce Street,'' La Haye said. “The suspect vehicle made a U-turn bringing it head-on with pursuing officers. As one officer got out of his vehicle to approach the suspect vehicle, it drove towards the officer. The officer, fearing for his life, fired four rounds at the suspect vehicle, which continued ramming into two police cars before stopping.''

La Haye said an unidentified woman and a dog sitting in the front passenger side of the car were struck by gunfire. The woman was taken to a local hospital for treatment where she was later pronounced dead.

Three men also in the vehicle were arrested and taken to the El Cajon Police Department for processing, La Haye said.

Two of the men were arrested on suspicion of narcotics-related offenses, La Haye said. A third man, the driver, was arrested for suspicion of attempted murder on a police officer and felony evading.

“It is believed the driver and his female passenger were fugitives and have active warrant arrests,'' La Haye said.

La Haye said the officer who fired at the suspect vehicle has been a police officer for three years.

No officers were injured during the incident. There were no outstanding suspects.

An investigation was continuing.

Anyone with information is urged to call El Cajon Police Department at 619-579-3311 or Crime Stoppers tip line at 888-580-8477.

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