Chowchilla police shoot suspect following pursuit

CHOWCHILLA, Calif. (KFSN) -- A car crashed into a Chowchilla home after a high-speed chase, and police shot one of the suspects. But witnesses say a good Samaritan also got caught up in the chaos.

The officer-involved shooting happened near Third Street and Colusa Avenue just after 4:30 p.m. Sunday. One suspect was shot in the hand, according to Chowchilla police, and another suspect was also taken into custody.

A trail of car parts led to a car stuck in a house at the edge of a crime scene. The red Honda Civic barely missed sideswiping a group of 20 people, according to witness Dale Lacroix.

"It was real close because we were all sitting out here having a barbecue, and the sign was flying right at them, so that's when I screamed 'look out' and everybody ran," said Lacroix.

He said the suspects took out the whole front end of a car before crashing into a nearby house. Witnesses watched in disbelief, he said, as two suspects -- a woman and man -- took off running in different directions. That's when a good Samaritan chased after one of the suspects.

"One of the people that was here visiting with us took off running after him. By the time the cops got back there, he was trying to go over the fence to go after the guy, and the cops grabbed him and put him down. They handcuffed him, and we're going, 'wait a minute, he was with us,'" said Lacroix.

The good Samaritan was eventually let go after police shot the real suspect. That man was shot in the hand by police, according to witnesses, in a span of minutes after he crashed the car. The woman was also arrested by police while hiding in nearby bushes, according to witnesses. Police won't say why the two were running but neighbors said they're happy the suspects are in custody.

"You see all these children here in these apartments? You know, I'm just glad I don't have young children anymore," said Anthony Bruambaugh.

Meanwhile, the officers and the dispatcher involved in this case will be on administrative leave.

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