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Police dog helps capture DUI suspect in Highway 101 car pursuit

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A Sebastopol man was arrested early Saturday after he led police on a pursuit that ended on Highway 101 when he was pulled from his burning truck by Petaluma police officers and a police dog.

Sergio V. Guerra, 37, was arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol, resisting arrest and felony reckless evasion in the incident that started at 2:16 a.m.

Guerra pulled into the parking lot of 7-Eleven on Petaluma Boulevard South at D Street where two police officers were stopped, police said.

He asked the officers if they were going to arrest him and said that he had nothing to lose, police said. Guerra then drove his Chevrolet Silverado out of the parking lot and onto Petaluma Boulevard South, where he stopped in the middle of the road and blocked traffic, police said.

The officers believed Guerra was intoxicated based upon his statements and driving. They tried to detain him, but he fled in his truck, police said.

He then drove erratically through the northwest neighborhoods of Petaluma at speeds up to 65 mph, not obeying any traffic signals, police said.

Guerra drove northbound on Petaluma Boulevard North and then onto northbound Highway 101, where officers requested the assistance of the CHP and the Sonoma County Sheriff’s Office. He reached speeds of 85 mph on the freeway during the 10-minute pursuit, police said.

Traveling up the Cotati grade, his engine caught on fire and his truck stopped in the middle of the highway, officers said.

Guerra did not leave his vehicle and rolled up his windows, despite commands from officers to exit the car.

An officer broke out the passenger side window and Petaluma police dog Basko was deployed into the vehicle to apprehend Guerra, police said. Basko made the first contact with Guerra and officers were able to arrest him. Officers could smell the odor of alcohol from Guerra, police said.

He was transported to Petaluma Valley Hospital for superficial wounds and then booked into the Sonoma County Jail.

You can reach Staff Writer Bill Swindell at 707-521-5223 or bill.swindell@pressdemocrat.com. On Twitter @BillSwindell.

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