Man who led authorities on wild chase from O.C. to L.A. County charged with 18 felonies
An Orange County sheriff’s deputy who led authorities on a wild, high-speed drive that ended with them running from two law enforcement agencies is now facing charges in three separate incidents.
Randy Smith, a nine-year veteran of the department, was arrested in Orange County on suspicion of burglary and theft after a traffic stop Thursday night. The next day he led authorities on a high speed chase with two stolen cars with more than 15,000 miles on the odometers, according to the Orange County Sheriff’s Department.
After a 45-minute chase, Smith was apprehended by sheriff’s deputies as he was speeding away from Highway 52 in the South Bay, and he was taken to the Orange County Medical Center where he was treated for non-life-threatening injuries from the encounter, according to the department. Authorities did not release his medical conditions.
A sheriff’s deputy also was arrested on suspicion of theft after a traffic stop Thursday night. He was taken to the police department jail after allegedly driving a stolen car for several miles. He was released the following day and is not facing charges, according to the department.
Smith was stopped on Interstate 5 while driving his own vehicle and a stolen vehicle with its plates stolen from a different county. He drove away after a California Highway Patrol officer caught up with him and pulled him over, according to Orange County Sheriff Bill Brown.
“A deputy attempted to stop him on I-5 for driving a stolen vehicle and that is when my understanding is the deputy made contact with Smith,” Brown told The Times.
He said Smith was driving his own property from California, but did not comment on the case. As he drove away, he was speeding, and he ran a red light at the intersection of Main Street and Loma Vista Boulevard.
Deputy Smith’s license plate was on a stolen vehicle in the area when he was stopped by a CHP officer, and Smith then led authorities on a high speed chase through several counties. After a few miles, the chase ended, and he was eventually stopped