Fresno OIS suspect tried to run officer over

FRESNO, Calif.

A crash into a fence at Barton and Washington is finally what brought Victor Mata and his pickup truck to a stop.

Police Chief Jerry Dyer says this well-known criminal, was not about to surrender peacefully when a motorcycle officer tried to pull him over Sunday night.

Chief Dyer said, "The suspect told the investigators that he knew that he had a suspended license and did not want to have his vehicle impounded and that's why he initially tried to evade the officers."

Mata has a long and elaborate criminal history, including a felony charge in 2009 of buying or receiving a stolen vehicle. He was also convicted of running away from a police officer and reckless driving.

In 2006 he was convicted of driving without a valid license. In 2005 he was convicted of obstructing an officer and driving under the influence.

Sunday, Chief Dyer said Mata faced off with yet another officer. After driving up onto a curb, the chief says the suspect ignored the officer's orders.

Chief Dyer said, "The suspect refused to get out of the car and in fact put the car into reverse and accelerated to the point where his tires were smoking but his car was lodged onto this tree root."

Eventually, the pickup dislodged and jolted back toward the officer. According to witnesses, the truck came within feet of hitting the officer. That's when the officer fired his gun several times. But, the confrontation wasn't over yet. Investigators say Mata drove off again. And the officer, who fired at him, jumped on his motorcycle and followed.

Within just three blocks Dyer says the suspect was involved in three separate collisions, the final one ended in a trip to the hospital and then to jail.

Police say none of the bullets struck Mata. But he complained of some pain and was treated at the hospital. Investigators say Mata was also under the influence of alcohol during the incident.

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