High-speed pursuit crashes through the Valley Animal Shelter

FRESNO, Calif.

High-speed pursuits usually involve roads and highways, but the one from Tuesday morning somehow made its way through the Valley Animal Center.

The destruction left behind is a huge setback for the shelter that was building a dog park for the community. There are pieces of twisted metal and fallen gates from the damage left behind at the Valley Animal Center.

Rosie Davenport of the Valley Animal Center said, "Arriving here really really early this morning, it was just heartbreaking."

Staff at the no-kill animal shelter arrived Tuesday morning to find its dog park, which is under construction, now in destruction.

"We have seen that almost every yard has been somehow damaged. The fencing has gone down, and in most places the concrete has been extremely damaged," said Davenport.

Investigators say 36-year-old Dale Ervin and his passenger 41-year-old Jill Scarborough were in a stolen truck trying to evade police when they busted through the front gate of the shelter.

The truck was going at high speeds, taking down everything in its path, leaving a trail of busted metal and tire marks. The driver realized once inside the premises there was no way out. He drove back out where he crashed into the front yard of a house on Dakota.

Lieutenant Don Gross of the Fresno Police Department said, "The suspect then rammed the officers vehicle several times, officers initiated a pit maneuver, ended up taking both the suspect and driver in custody."

The damage left behind is estimated to run in the tens of thousands of dollars.

Javier Perry, a shelter volunteer, said, "I am proud and happy to hear that none of the animals were harm. Still it's a setback for the group, which was planning to open the dog park to the community this summer.

"I mean we were really just close to completion here and that's obviously not going to happen anytime soon," said Davenport.

Now the estimated cost to repair the dog park is expected to be one-hundred thousand dollars. Shelter organizers say while donations are welcomed, they would rather have people come in and adopt one of their animals.

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