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Tow truck pursuit ends with driver arrested by LAPD

April 24, 2012 12:00:00 AM PDT
An LAPD pursuit of a driver of a tow truck through the Hollywood area ended peacefully with the driver's arrest Tuesday.

The tow truck was at the scene of a collision at Woodman Avenue and Magnolia Boulevard in Sherman Oaks, according to the LAPD. Police said the driver got into an altercation with or argument with at least one officer at the scene, then drove off. The incident occurred at about 4:40 p.m.

The LAPD announced about 6:40 p.m. that the driver was wanted for assault with a deadly weapon on an officer. He reportedly tried to run over an officer.

The driver surrendered to LAPD officers at 6:45 p.m. in Glendale at Brand Boulevard and Mountain Street. Officers approached him with guns drawn. He was handcuffed without incident.

The pursuit originally proceeded from Studio City on Cahuenga Boulevard into Hollywood, then to Los Feliz. The driver then led police back into Hollywood. The pursuit then went north on Cahuenga Boulevard toward Universal City. By 6:30 p.m. the driver led police through Atwater Village into Glendale. The pursuit lasted about two hours.

The driver managed to evade at least four police "spike strips" or "stop strips" designed to puncture tires.

About 12 LAPD cruisers were in pursuit on surface streets. The tow truck driver avoided any freeway.

The tow truck is based out of Orange County, according to its decals. The company is Portola Towing based in Lake Forest.

The truck was estimated to weigh about 7.5 tons, which likely prevented police cruisers from attempting a PIT maneuver.

The driver was later identified as 31-year-old Ambartsum Sarkisyan. He was booked for assault with a deadly weapon on a police officer. His bail was set at $50,000.

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