Juveniles arrested for stealing 2 LAPD vehicles, causing chases, crashes

SOUTH LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- Two Los Angeles police cars were stolen in South Los Angeles, leading to two separate pursuits that ended with crashes and three teenage suspects in custody, police said.

It all started about 9:30 p.m., when police discovered two stolen cruisers and a pursuit ensued.

Officers located one and gave chase, with the stolen police vehicle crashing in the area of 77th and San Pedro streets. A juvenile suspect was taken into custody, and one witness said the teen driver appeared to be injured.

"I guess the impact shook him and had him kind of rattled because it took him maybe 15 to 20 seconds to get out of the car and run. And when he ran, he fell twice because he was dazed," said the witness, who did not want to be identified.

A second pursuit ended with a crash at Central Avenue and Adams Boulevard, where the police cruiser struck a white sedan. The woman inside complained of back pain but was not seriously hurt, police said. The second suspect was arrested at the scene.

It was unclear where the third suspect was arrested.

At least one of the vehicles belongs to the LAPD's 77th Division, and the other was from a different police station, investigators said.

Police were working to determine how the teens were able to pull off the crimes.

"It's so early in the investigation that we don't know the means by which the vehicles were removed from the police facilities, or if there were keys involved. We are still trying to sort all of that out," said Beatrice Girmala of the LAPD.

No weapons were found in either cruiser, police said.

The ages of the unidentified suspects, who police said all knew each other, were not yet released.

During one of the chases, an officer in pursuit was involved in a crash with a different vehicle in the area of Broadway and Gage Avenue. That vehicle was not involved in the crime.
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