More details have been released about a multi-vehicle wreck in Chandler caused by suspected burglars.
The crash at Arizona Avenue and Warner Road on Wednesday ended with five people injured, one severely, and four people arrested. One suspect was still on the loose as of Thursday morning.
Both injured and arrested was Manuel Ernesto Wakamatsu, 19, of Chandler. His condition was not known, but Wakamatsu was well enough to be treated at the police station.
Also taken into custody were: Edward Valencia Quintana, 39, of Chandler; David Irving Jacobo, an 18-year-old Mexican citizen residing in Chandler; and Ernesto Luis J Carpio, 38, of Chandler.
According to Chandler police spokesman Det. Frank Mendoza, the incident began with a witness seeing men scaling a wall of a residence in the 100 block of West Orchid Lane, and then removing a screen from a bathroom window.
The men loaded goods into their Ford Expedition and drove off, but the witness was able to describe the vehicle to police.
As the Expedition was driving northbound on Arizona, police spotted the SUV at Knox Road.
The suspects, noticing the police, pulled into the far right lane about 400 feet south of the Arizona/Warner intersection, slowed to a near-stop and opened the doors as to bolt, Mendoza said.
But it was a ruse. The Expedition’s doors slammed shut, and the driver quickly accelerated – and the SUV was struck broadside at the intersection. The SUV ended up on its roof.
Wakamatsu, although injured, attempted to flee but he was arrested near the scene. Quintana ran, but police caught up with him and deployed a Taser when he didn’t listen to their commands.
Jacobo, after being tackled by police, was found to be in possession of an allegedly stolen gun. Meanwhile, Carpio had an mp3 player also reported stolen.
All were booked on suspicion of burglary and theft.
Carpio was carrying gloves when arrested, leading to a count of possession of burglary tools. In addition, he was wanted for three counts of failure to appear in court and violating probation.
The incident happened about an hour before a serial bank robber crashed his getaway car into another vehicle, killing himself and the other driver, on the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community.