EL CAJON, Calif. - A 33-year-old man who allegedly ran a red light and then twice slammed his pickup truck into pursuing police vehicles during a chase over busy El Cajon streets was in custody Friday, authorities said.
Investigators tell 10News that Jerry Lee Hickethier of El Cajon came to a sudden stop around 5:45 p.m. Thursday, put his vehicle in reverse, and rammed into a police cruiser, causing moderate damage to the officer’s vehicle.
He then led police on a nearly 30 minute chase, mostly on surface at approximately 40mph.
At one point during the pursuit, officers attempted to close in on Hickethier’s vehicle, when the suspect slammed into a pole, shattering a window, and crushing parts of a small brick wall. Police say Hickethier drove on a flat tire and tried to enter the Interstate 8 Freeway from El Cajon Boulevard when police attempted a pit maneuver.
Hickethier surrendered as he jumped out of his car and nearly a dozen officers tackled him to the ground.
“Further danger to the public was mitigated by the officers involved not allowing the suspect to enter the freeway,” said Lt. R. Soulard in a written press release. “Their actions should be greatly commended.”
Police told 10News that Hickethier was not speaking coherently when he was arrested, so they will be investigating if drugs or alcohol played a role in his erratic behavior.
No one was seriously injured in the chase. Ironically, the pursuit came to an end near Chase Avenue.
Hickethier was booked on suspicion of assault with a deadly weapon on a police officer and evading arrest, Soulard said.
Hickethier was being held without bail at the San Diego Central Jail and was due in court on Tuesday, according to online booking records.