L.A. Man Faces Charges After Crashing Into Police Cars, Vehicle With Baby on Board During Chase: DA
A Los Angeles man was charged Monday with felony counts of assaulting a police officer and other charges after allegedly crashing into multiple vehicles during a pursuit last week, including one carrying a baby, prosecutors said.
Pharuehat Wilaisophakun, 27, led officers on a chase April 4 after an officer witnessed him get into a crash in a 2018 Prius and he refused to stop in Hollywood, according to the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office.
Speeding as he fled officers, Wilaisophakun was running red lights and weaving in and out of traffic, prosecutors allege. He is accused of ramming three patrol vehicles who tried ending the pursuit by blocking his car.
He also crashed into a parked vehicle with a 1-year-old inside later in the chase, which only ended once the Prius collided into a truck and was pinned by police vehicles blocking its path, according to prosecutors.
Sky5 aerial footage from that day shows a Prius wedged between a patrol vehicle and a parked pickup truck along a residential street just off North Normandie and Melrose avenues in East Hollywood around 12:30 p.m.
The driver is seen being taken into custody shortly after. Inmate records indicate Wilaisophakun was arrested at 2 p.m.
The infant was not wounded and no injuries were reported in the incident.
Wilaisophakun faces eight felony charges including three counts of assault with a deadly weapon — a car in this case — and two felony counts each of assault upon a peace officer and hit-and-run driving resulting in injury to another person, prosecutors said.
Among the other charges filed against him are a felony count of fleeing a pursuing peace officer’s motor vehicle while driving recklessly and four misdemeanor counts of hit-and-run driving resulting in property damage.
He faces a maximum possible sentence of 22 years in state prison if convicted. While prosecutors say his bail has been scheduled at $340,000, inmate records show it listed as $50,000 as of Monday evening.
No other details have been released by the DA’s office.