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San Diego police arrested a suspected wrong-way driver Monday after a pursuit and standoff at a Golden Hill intersection that lasted nearly an hour.

The man was spotted driving the wrong way on a downtown street shortly before 10:10 a.m. by a patrol officer who tried to pull the vehicle over, police said.

The driver sped off and ran several red lights before he stopped at the intersection of 22nd Street and Broadway, police Lt. Steve Waldheim told OnScene TV.

After the man parked on the road, he sat in his vehicle and yelled out his window at officers as they directed him to get out of his car, video shot by OnScene TV shows.


During the standoff he spit out his window, threatened to kill police and directed officers to shoot him. He also threw items out of the car into the street. Several officers, standing behind the doors of a police vehicle, pointed their guns at him.

Shirtless and with bare feet, he eventually got out of his car and briefly sat on the ground near a police vehicle as he talked with a police officer. He then got up and began to run away.

At that point, he was chased down, first by three officers, as they yelled at him to “get on the ground now.” He then was taken to the ground by several more officers. The arrest was made around 11 a.m., police said.

OnScene video shows at least 23 officers near the man as he was being arrested.

Police spokesman Officer Scott Lockwood said there were several teams assembled, including canine officers, to react depending on if the man tried to drive off or run away. Lockwood said there was a large response to the incident because officers at the scene called for “cover now” — a call that signifies an officer needs help and that summons anyone nearby to respond.

No officers were injured. Waldheim said the suspect suffered “very minor injuries” when he was arrested on suspicion of evading arrest and disobeying an officer.

Waldheim said officers try to use the minimum amount of force necessary and that they negotiated with the suspect for a “great length of time.”

“We did not want the suspect to take off in his vehicle to harm himself or others, and so we used the best approach we could to take him safely into custody,” he said.

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