South Bay News

Car chase ends in fatal crash in San Jose

Monday, February 18, 2013

A San Jose police officer is resting today after nearly being run over by a suspected car thief. It was part of a chase that started just before midnight on East Capitol Expressway and ended with the suspect in a deadly crash on Blossom Hill Road.

A 20-year-old man drove on the wrong side of the road and ended up overturned down a hill just feet away from homes and families.

"'Get your hands up!' So I kind of figured someone was coming, so I closed everything up," said Alex Cisneros of San Jose.

Cisneros was getting ready for bed just after 11 last night when he heard a police chase end violently behind his home off the Blossom Hill Road overpass.

"I usually hear people hit this corner pretty fast, so I didn't think anything of it, but it was followed by a huge boom," said Cisneros.

Out of his second story window, just feet from his backyard fence, was the overturned and mangled stolen SUV. Its driver, a 20-year-old-man, had died.

It started just after 11 last night when San Jose Police Officer Michael Ceballos was making a traffic stop and another driver started speeding toward him.

"The driver of the vehicle was making eye contact with him, and he knew that this person was intentionally driving the vehicle towards him. He jumped up on the hood of his car to try to avoid the suspect vehicle," said San Jose Police Department Lt. Michael Sullivan.

The officer took off to chase the suspect five miles down Highway 101. Three more patrol cars were brought in for backup. The driver went to great lengths trying to evade officers, including turning off his lights as he raced through San Jose streets at speeds of up to 100 miles per hour before the fatal crash.

"He was conscious and breathing at the time we made contact. The San Jose fire department was almost immediately on the scene with us. They went down to tend to him, he stopped breathing and ended up dying down in the ravine," said Sullivan.

As Cisneros and his neighbors watched the scene unfold their only consolation was the quick and massive response by law enforcement.

"Actually, before I went to bed, I told my girlfriend -- because the fact that there were so many cops trying to get that car -- I was like, 'well, at least we know we're safe for the rest of the night, because they're going to be out there all night,'" said Cisneros.

Police were out at the scene overnight investigating. From the overturned car, officers caught two female juveniles trying to escape. They're in custody being questioned. Meanwhile the coroner's office is working to identify the deceased driver. He had no wallet or identification on him at the time of the crash.

(Copyright ©2014 KGO-TV. All Rights Reserved.)

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