CHULA VISTA (CNS) - A teenage boy was in juvenile hall Thursday and a 22-year-old gang member was being sought in the aftermath of an aborted traffic stop that escalated into a non-injury officer-involved shooting in a South Bay alley.
The events that led to the gunfire began about 11:30 p.m. Wednesday, when a patrolman saw a car with two or more people in it being driven erratically near Memorial Park in Chula Vista, according to police Lt. Vern Sallee.
The officer followed the vehicle into an access road off the 400 block of Third Avenue, where the driver abruptly stopped, backed up and struck the front of his marked patrol car, the lieutenant said.
As the officer got out of his cruiser, the driver of the other car pulled forward, then made a quick U-turn and accelerated toward him, according to Sallee.
The suspect's vehicle slammed into the patrol car again, losing its front bumper and grille in the process. The patrolman responded by firing several shots from his service pistol before the suspect sped off.
A short time later, police found the damaged vehicle abandoned about a block away, with several bullet holes in it, Sallee said.
Officers searched the area and detained a 15-year-old boy and two men in three separate locations, Capt. Gary Wedge said. However, the person believed to have been driving the car, Gerardo Rodriguez-Meza of Chula Vista, eluded capture, according to Wedge.
Detectives interrogated the boy, whose name was withheld because he is a minor, before booking him on suspicion of assault. The other two detainees were questioned and released pending further investigation.
Police were still searching this afternoon for Rodriguez-Meza, who is a documented gang member, according to Wedge.
The shooting and crashes caused no known injuries, the captain said.