A man suspected of driving drunk attempted to outrun a sheriff’s deputy in Windsor, racing faster than 100 mph south on Highway 101 before crashing into another vehicle in Santa Rosa and getting arrested following a brief, tense standoff with several officers.
After the chase and crash late Saturday night, driver Jason Patrick Smith, 44, stayed inside his mangled Subaru, making furtive movements and then smoking a cigarette while ignoring officers’ orders to get out and get down on the ground, Windsor Sgt. Andy Cash said Monday.
Meanwhile, about 15 officers and deputies converged on the crash scene at Steele Lane and the Highway 101 offramp and took up positions behind their vehicles, guns drawn.
Not far from the Subaru was a wrecked pickup. Inside, two people remained untended for about five minutes while the situation with Smith unfolded.
“We were unable to render aid to them” while trying to get the man into custody, Cash said. “We didn’t know what we were dealing with. If he were armed, we’d put ourselves in jeopardy.”
After a few minutes, an officer shot out a window in Smith’s car with a hard foam projectile and Jags, a Windsor police dog, jumped inside. The dog bit the man who then climbed out and gave up, Cash said.
The two people in the pickup, Maria and Melecio Perez, 51 and 59 of Santa Rosa, were taken to a hospital, treated for minor injuries and released.
Smith remained hospitalized Monday with injuries from the crash and a bite to his left arm.
The man has an extensive criminal history including five stays in state prison, according to Sonoma County court records. He’s been convicted of assault, making felony threats, grand theft auto and a Sonoma Valley police chase similar to Saturday night’s pursuit.
Smith was arrested on suspicion of felony drunken driving, felony evasion, violating his probation and driving with a suspended license. He is expected to be booked into the Sonoma County Jail after he is released from the hospital.
The incident began at about 10:30 p.m. when a deputy on Shiloh Road spotted a Subaru driver run a red light, Cash said. The deputy attempted to stop the driver, who instead headed onto southbound Highway 101 and led the deputy on a 6-mile chase that at times exceeded 100 mph.
In Santa Rosa, the driver took the Steele Lane exit and blew through a red light, Cash said. The Subaru T-boned a pickup traveling with the green light, Cash said.
The chase and crash led to a call for additional officers and Windsor and Santa Rosa police, deputies and CHP responded.
The two wrecked vehicles blocked the intersection, which also became clogged with numerous patrol cars from the different departments. The CHP is investigating the crash.
You can reach Staff Writer Randi Rossmann at 521-5412 or firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter at #rossmannreport.