Cellphone video leads to chase on Oakland streets


It's one of those "don't try this at home" stories -- police say on one hand, the video the citizens took was very helpful, on the other, it also put them in a very precarious position.

Cellphone video shows an Oakland couple coming face to face with a gun-wielding suspect who's none too happy he's being recorded.

The incident started at 4 p.m. Monday, when the couple was driving on High Street near Foothill Boulevard. There they saw a Nissan Altima with two men inside driving erratically, even crossing over to the wrong side of the street.

At one point, the suspects pull up to the couple, pull out a gun and demand they hand over the phone.

The couple was able to speed away, but only for a short distance.

"When they reached the 4700 block of Foothill and they pulled over and stopped, unbeknownst to them, one of the suspects opened the back door of the car and got in the car," Oakland Police Ofc. Johnna Watson said. "At gunpoint, he demanded the cellphone and the video. The husband was able to push the suspect out of the car and directed his wife to hit the gas and get out of there."

The couple got away, but not before the suspect fired several shots, hitting their car.

The victims then shared their video with police, who recognized one suspect and his Nissan, which they tracked down two hours later on the 1200 block of Seminary Avenue. There, the two suspects were arrested. They have been identified as 21-year-old James Crosby and his 39-year-old brother-in-law Michael Meadows.

"We live in a day and time when electronic devices can capture and further investigations, but at the same time, we don't want to injured are killed because of it, so we need to use a fine balance." Watson said.

Crosby is believed to be the one who waved the gun at the couple in the video and later fired shots at them. Both men are expected to be charged with attempted robbery and assault with a firearm, among other things.

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