Wild ending to CHP wrong-way DUI pursuit

HIGHLAND — A woman and CHP officer were hospitalized as a precaution after a chase involving an allegedly intoxicated wrong-way driver Monday afternoon, Feb. 10. The pursuit began in Fontana and ended in Highland, according to CHP.

The chase, which began after CHP received reports of a wrong way driver traveling at high speed in the area of the 210 Freeway near Ayala Drive, came to a dramatic ending when the pursued vehicle ended up on top of a CHP cruiser that was chasing the alleged suspect.

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Officers were first alerted to the wrong-way driver around 3:30 p.m., CHP Officer Ivan Sandova later reported. 911 callers reported a green Jeep was driving eastbound in the westbound lanes at speeds in excess of 85 mph. Callers also reported the speeding Jeep was nearly involved in several collisions.

As officers converged on the area and began searching for the wrong-way driver, officials received updates that the vehicle had exited the freeway at 5th St./Greenspot Ave. in the Highland area.

A Los Angeles woman was arrested after a wild pursuit that began in Fontana and ended in Highland, with the woman’s Jeep on top of a police cruiser that had been pursuing the alleged drunk driver. Loudlabs News photos

Officers soon spotted the Jeep and tried to conduct a traffic stop, but the driver refused to yield to the officers’ lights and sirens and sped away.

As the pursuit continued eastbound on 5th St.-Greenspot Rd. the driver, who was later identified as Katherin Kim Armistead, 35, of Los Angeles, drove in an extremely reckless manner, without regard for the safety of pursuing officers or other citizens, according to Sandoval; who said the fleeing woman was seen running several red lights and causing more near-collisions.

When the pursuit neared the Highland Crossings shopping center a CHP officer reportedly conducted a PIT maneuver, causing both the Jeep and police cruiser to careen out of control and crash.

The impact caused the Jeep to end up on top of the CHP vehicle, with its right rear wheel crashing through the cruiser’s front windshield.

After the collision, Armistead was quickly arrested without further incident, according to Sandoval.

Although no injuries were reported, both the CHP officer and Armistead were transported to an area hospital for evaluation.

Officers arrested Armistead and she was later booked into West Valley Detention Center in Rancho Cucamonga on suspicion of assault with a deadly weapon, driving under the influence, and recklessly evading law enforcement officers.

She remains in custody in lieu of $100,000 bail.


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Contact the writer: trevor.rcns@gmail.com

Trevor Montgomery, 48, moved in 2017 to the Intermountain area of Shasta County from Riverside County and runs Riverside County News Source and Shasta County News Source. Additionally, he writes or has written for several other news organizations; including Riverside County based newspapers, Valley News, (the now defunct) Valley Chronicle, Anza Valley Outlook, and Hemet & San Jacinto Chronicle; as well as Bonsall/Fallbrook Village News in San Diego County and Mountain Echo in Shasta County.

Trevor spent 10 years in the U.S. Army as an Orthopedic Specialist before joining the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department in 1998. He was medically retired after losing his leg, breaking his back, and suffering both spinal cord and brain injuries in an off-duty accident. (Click here to see segment of Discovery Channel documentary of Trevor’s accident.)

During his time with the sheriff’s department, Trevor worked at several different stations; including Robert Presley Detention Center, Southwest Station in Temecula, Hemet/Valle Vista Station, Ben Clark Public Safety Training Center, and Lake Elsinore Station; along with other locations.

Trevor’s assignments included Corrections, Patrol, DUI Enforcement, Boat and Personal Water-Craft based Lake Patrol, Off-Road Vehicle Enforcement, Problem Oriented Policing Team, and Personnel/Background Investigations. He finished his career while working as a Sex Crimes and Child Abuse Investigator and was a court-designated expert in child abuse and child sex-related crimes.

Trevor has been married for more than 29 years and was a foster parent to more than 60 children over 13 years. He is now an adoptive parent and his “fluid family” includes 13 children and 16 grandchildren.

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