Two people were killed after a car fleeing from pursuing officers crashed into parked vehicles in a CVS parking lot in Northridge early Friday morning, California Highway Patrol said.
At about 1 a.m., West Valley CHP officers initiated traffic stop for a white Toyota Paseo they suspected might have been stolen. The driver, a man in his 20s, initially yielded but as officers approached, the driver fled the scene heading southbound on Reseda Boulevard, CHP Officer Weston Haver said.
Officers started pursuing the Toyota, but for public safety, discontinued the pursuit after seeing the fleeing driver run two red lights at a high rate of speed, Haver said.
Seconds after the pursuit was discontinued, officers drove southbound on Reseda Boulevard, where they found that the driver had lost control and crashed into the parked cars in the parking lot south of Devonshire on Reseda Boulevard, CHP said.
A woman in her 50s was in one of the parked cars at the time and she was transported to a hospital where she succumbed to her injuries. Authorities did not identify the victim.
The driver of the Toyota was ejected from the car upon impact and was also killed. His passenger, another man in his 20s, was taken to hospital with serious life threatening injuries, Haver said.
The crash is under investigation. Haver said it is unknown what led to the driver losing control, but speed was likely a factor.
The area was closed off as officers worked to gather statements from witnesses and review surveillance video to estimate the speed the vehicle was traveling at.
No further details were immediately available.