Suspect in Custody After Chase Through Menifee Neighborhood

Police today captured a man hiding in the garage of a house in Menifee after a search of the neighb...

Police today captured a man hiding in the garage of a house in Menifee after a search of the neighborhood that lasted three hours and included more than 15 police units and two K-9 units.

About 10:10 a.m., police removed the suspect from a home in the 28700 block of Avenida Pacifica, just east of Marne Way, after a police dog tracked down the man and attacked him as officers approached, according to Sgt. Dave Douglas of the Menifee Police Department. The man was treated on scene for bites on his arm and shoulder and was taken into custody.

According to Douglas, the man will be charged with three felonies: Burglary, auto theft and felony evading.

Residents cheered police and the K-9 unit as officers left the area with the suspect in the back of a police cruiser. Nearby Callie Kirkpatrick Elementary School, which was placed on lockdown as a precautionary measure, was re-opened about 10:30, said Betti Cadmus, spokesperson for the Menifee Union School District.

Students were never in danger, Cadmus said.

Douglas said the incident began early this morning when Murrieta Police received the report of a stolen vehicle through the car's OnStar auto security system. The car was tracked to Domenigoni Parkway near Winchester Road, where Douglas was in on the apprehension of a suspect there.

That suspect indicated there was another suspect driving in the area in a white Ford F-150 truck. Officers spotted that vehicle nearby on Domenigoni Parkway and a chase began west toward Menifee.

"An officer in the area spotted the truck," Douglas said. "The guy panicked and took off. We began a pursuit at that time."

According to Douglas, police units chased the truck into a neighborhood just to the west of Callie Kirkpatrick Elementary School, just about the time students were being dropped off at the school. At about 7:20 a.m., the truck pulled into the driveway of a home on the cul-de-sac Corte Capri, two tires shredded from running into obstacles along the way.

A witness who lives in the area said she heard officers shouting at the suspect to surrender, but she saw him hop over a backyard fence. She said he ran through a yard, onto Marne Way, down Loire Valley and into another yard, heading in the direction of Avenica Pacifica.

"I was out for my morning walk and I heard sirens and a car banging against something," the witness said. "The cops were yelling at a man and I saw him jumping over a neighbor's gate and onto Marne Way. Then he took off down Loire Valley."

Officers from several area police departments took part in the door-to-door search, including police from Menifee, Perris, Canyon Lake, Moreno Valley and Murrieta. Officers used a police dog and a bloodhound in the search.

The search covered several blocks, with a police helicopter circling overhead. Officers focused on the south side of the 28700 block of Avenida Pacifica. Moments later, the suspect was removed from the garage of a residence by several officers, including the K-9 unit.

The extent of the man's injuries are not known. Police have not released the identity of the man apprehended in Menifee or the suspect taken into custody on Domenigoni Parkway.


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