RIPON (CBS13) — A Salida man was arrested Monday for reportedly backing into a patrol vehicle, damaging property, and leading police on a chase in a stolen vehicle.

Ripon Police said a patrol officer located a reported stolen car near Stouffer Hall Sunday night around 8 p.m. The officer pulled the car over in the rear parking lot and then the driver, 37-year-old Gabriel Velasquez, reversed into the patrol car and drove off. The officer was already outside of the patrol vehicle and was not injured in the incident.

Officers said Velasquez struck a pedestrian gate on the south side of Stouffer Park and exited onto Tornell Drive.

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He then drove into the parking lot at Bike Bridge, through a closed emergency access gate and onto a bike path. After crossing the bridge and crashing through safety poles, police said Velasquez drove through cyclone fencing to escape officers.

Officers recovered the stolen vehicle in the 5000 block of Durley Drive in Salida.

Velasquez was arrested in Salida Monday afternoon and booked on charges of possession of a stolen vehicle, assaulting a police officer, and evading police.


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