Deputies say 12-year-old Hanford boy arrested after stealing family's minivan, driving recklessly

The boy led Fresno County deputies on an hourlong chase, reaching speeds of over 70 mph and running stop signs.

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Monday, August 15, 2022
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The boy led Fresno County deputies on an hourlong chase, reaching speeds over 70 mph, running stop signs and driving on the opposite side of the road.

FRESNO COUNTY, Calif. (KFSN) -- A 12-year-old boy is in custody after leading Fresno County deputies on an hourlong high-speed car chase on Monday morning.

The sheriff's office says the young suspect from Hanford stole his family's minivan and wanted to drive up to Sacramento, where the family used to live.

At about 9:30 am, the van was spotted by a Fresno County deputy after it hit a sign in the Riverdale area.

The deputy caught up to the vehicle and tried to make a traffic stop, but the boy sped away.

According to the sheriff's office, at times, the boy drove at speeds of over 70 mph, ran stop signs and drove on the opposite side of the road.

Deputies kept trying to disable the minivan by setting up spike strips, but the boy was able to avoid them.

Just before 10:30 am, the boy swerved at a sergeant laying a spike strip. Then he ran over the strip, and one of the minivan's tires was damaged.

He finally came to a stop a mile away near Santa Fe County Road and American Avenue, between Mendota and Tranquillity.

The Fresno County Sheriff's Office arrested the boy. He has been booked into Juvenile Hall and is facing charges of auto theft, evading police and assault with a deadly weapon.