Suspected auto thief rams police cars, injures officer

July 29, 2010 1:28:21 PM PDT
An officer was injured in Redwood City on Wednesday afternoon when the driver of a stolen vehicle rammed two police cars in an alleged effort to escape capture, police said.

At about 12:45 p.m., Redwood City police and a San Mateo County Vehicle Theft Task Force unit were conducting surveillance in the 2300 block of Cheshire Way when a man later identified as Justin Ralph Mitchell, 22, of Redwood City, was spotted getting into a stolen car, police said.

An additional Redwood City police car arrived, prompting Mitchell to try to flee, police said.

He quickly pulled away from the curb and rammed a marked police car and an unmarked task force vehicle, injuring an officer, according to police.

Mitchell then allegedly drove down a cul-de-sac on Oak Ridge Drive and crashed into a gate, police said. He was taken into custody without further incident.

The injured officer was treated at a hospital and released.

Mitchell was treated for minor injuries and arrested on suspicion of vehicle theft, assault with a deadly weapon on a police officer, violation of parole and drug charges.


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