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Pursuit of kidnapping suspect ends in fatal crash

February 16, 2012 12:40:25 AM PST
A pursuit of a kidnapping suspect ended with a head-on crash in the Westlake district on Thursday, killing the alleged kidnapping victim.

Authorities said they responded to a report of a suspect grabbing a woman off the street in the area of 6th and Bixel streets just after 8 a.m. Officers spotted the suspect and victim in a black GMC Yukon and pursued the vehicle.

"(The officers) could see the victim hanging out the window waving at the officers, trying to attract their attention," said LAPD Cmdr. Andrew Smith.

The pursuit traveled westbound on 6th Street and only lasted about a mile. It ended when the suspect's vehicle collided head-on with a Volvo.

The suspect took off running after the crash, but after a short foot pursuit, officers were able to take him into custody. Smith said the suspect was not armed.

The alleged kidnapping victim was rushed to a local hospital, where she was declared dead. Her name has not been released.

The driver of the Volvo suffered broken bones, Smith said.

A motive for the alleged kidnapping has not yet been determined, and it was unclear what the relationship was between the suspect and the victim.

"We believe he may know the victim. It may have been some type of relationship between the suspect and the victim," Smith said.

Police say it appears officers stayed within the department's pursuit policy during the chase.

The suspect, whose name has not been released, was booked for murder.