A 24-year-old Los Angeles man was taken to a hospital and then to county jail after leading police on a one-hour freeway chase in a stolen SUV. The chase ended in downtown Los Angeles in front of the Spring Hotel. Most of the chase was uneventful, except for an empty bottle of whiskey that the driver threw at one police vehicle.
When the driver got into downtown, things started to happen. He ran over a fire hydrant. The water spewed out of the hydrant, causing a geyser that ruined all the books in several carts that a vendor had put outside to attract customers into his bookstore. The driver hurriedly turned west onto Grand Avenue and managed to bang into three parked cars on one side of that street and two cars on the other side. The driver also tried to run over a police officer, who was standing in the crosswalk ordering him to halt.
Turning north, the driver caused a bus to slam on its brakes to avoid a collision. The bus was empty, and the bus driver was uninjured. However, two police cars that were pursuing the SUV from different directions were not so lucky. One of them ran into the front of the bus, and the other into the back. Because the drivers had braked early enough, the damage to their cars was minor. Both officers resumed the chase.
They only went two blocks north to find that the SUV had come to a full stop because it had plowed into a newspaper stand. The driver, who was not wearing a seatbelt, was slumped behind the steering wheel. The proprietor of the newsstand was yelling at the driver and shaking a magazine at him. The police called for the ambulance. They charged the driver with failure to yield to a police officer and driving under the influence.