CHATSWORTH, Calif. (KABC) --A kidnapping suspect led officers on a high-speed pursuit in Malibu Wednesday after allegedly assaulting an officer in Chatsworth. He was taken into custody about two hours later.
Authorities say an off-duty FBI agent spotted the suspect trying to kidnap a woman outside LA Fitness near De Soto Avenue and Nordhoff Street around 6:54 p.m. The agent opened fire and the suspect took off.
The suspect, described as a Middle Eastern man in his 30s, fled the scene in a black BMW. The suspect's car had several bullet holes in the windshield.
"It's our understanding that the suspect was struck," FBI Assistant Special Agent Robert Clark said.
Witness Liz Cook said she had just left LA Fitness and was walking to her car when she suddenly heard yelling. She said the off-duty officer identified himself, told her to get in her car and get down, then she heard five or six gunshots.
A high-speed pursuit ensued, with the suspect driving erratically at very high speeds and changing lanes abruptly. At some point, he removed the female victim from his vehicle.
The pursuit ended in Malibu when the suspect bailed on foot and ran downhill from Malibu Bluffs Park near Pepperdine University on Pacific Coast Highway. The suspect could be seen dropping items as he fled the car on foot.
The suspect ran across the park and plunged down a steep hill. He was seen lying on a hillside after ditching his gun somewhere in the dense brush.
Officers were seen cautiously containing the area in an attempt to take the individual into custody. The suspect remained prone on an exposed portion of the hillside.
An L.A. County Fire Department helicopter responded to the scene to pick up the injured suspect. The suspect was surrounded and officers moved in at about 8:55 p.m. The suspect was checked out by officers and paramedics, who stripped off his hooded sweatshirt and T-shirt and put him on a gurney. He was flown to a local hospital for treatment and was expected to be OK.
Los Angeles Sheriff's deputies, Los Angeles police and CHP officers were cooperating in the investigation.