15-year-old crashes stolen car in Hemet after brief police chase

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A 15-year-old car theft suspect crashed in Hemet after trying to evade police. The driver and two other juveniles were injured in the wreck, officials said. (KABC)

A 15-year-old car theft suspect crashed in Hemet after trying to evade police. The driver and two other juveniles were injured in the wreck, officials said.

It all started shortly before midnight, when Hemet dispatch received a call about a car theft in the 1300 block of Cabrillo Drive.

The car theft victim told the dispatcher that he heard the car leaving, and it was traveling east on Oakland Avenue. He also told the dispatcher that the car had recently been stolen and recovered, but a set of keys for the car remained missing.

Responding officers spotted the stolen car traveling east in the 400 block of E. Oakland Avenue and attempted to conduct a traffic stop. The driver refused to pull over, and a brief pursuit ensued.

The driver lost control of the car in the 200 block of N. Columbia Street, and the vehicle spun into a tree. The driver, described by Hemet police as being 15 years old, and two other juveniles inside the car were injured.

Firefighters had to use the Jaws of Life to remove the three from the wreckage. All three juveniles were transported to a local hospital, where one was listed in critical condition and the other two were listed in stable condition.

Pieces of the car's shattered windshield fell upon to the driveway of area resident Armando Sanchez.

"Yeah, it was really bad. The car was almost half the size after the crash," Sanchez said. "I'm surprised they survived because the way that car looked."

Investigators are trying to determine if the juveniles were involved in the previous theft of the car. In this case, authorities said charges will be filed against the driver for possession of stolen property and felony evasion. There may also be charges related to child endangerment, police said.
Related Topics:
newscar crashtraffic accidentstolen carpolice chasejuvenile crimeHemetRiverside County
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