Police: Driver intentionally hit pedestrian while fleeing officers

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SAN DIEGO — Police say it appears a man driving a stolen Hummer intentionally hit a pedestrian Sunday while trying to get away from officers.

The 52-year-old victim was in the hospital with life-threatening injuries after the police chase spanned several neighborhoods late Sunday morning.

San Diego police said they got a request for help from Chula Vista around 11:10 a.m. Officers were chasing a Hummer that was stolen from a RoadOne impound yard when it crashed into the Chevron gas station at Melrose and Orange Avenue, authorities said.

The collision didn’t stop the driver, who continued southbound on Interstate 5 before exiting onto Palm Avenue. He drove into Apache Trailer Park, where an SDPD officer tried to place a spike strip under the front wheels of the car.

San Diego police said the driver sped off and hit a pedestrian in the trailer park while trying to get away, adding in a news release that “it appears as though the collision with the pedestrian was intentional.” The victim, a 52-year-old trailer park resident, was said to be in “very dire” condition at an area hospital.

Video showed officers take the driver, a 44-year-old man, into custody. A police K-9 helped in the takedown and the suspect was taken to the hospital for minor injuries, police said.

“It was dangerous,” neighbor Sarai Pedroza said. “I was a little scared.”

San Diego Police Department’s homicide detectives took over the investigation because of the severity of the victim’s injuries, according to a spokesperson. Police said the victim and suspect knew each other. Their names have not been released.

Anyone with information about this incident is asked to call the homicide unit at 619-531-2293 or Crime Stoppers at 888-580-8477.

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