Police chase ends in National City with driver, passenger arrested

SAN DIEGO (CNS) – A driver and his passenger, who were both out on bond, led law enforcement officers on a chase from the Dehesa area to National City today before being arrested, a sheriff’s sergeant said.

A sheriff’s deputy attempted to stop a speeding vehicle with an expired registration on Dehesa Road near Vista de la Montana shortly after 2 a.m., but the driver, later identified as 42-year-old Michael Babbitt, failed to comply, sheriff’s Sgt. Benjamin MacBeth said.

Babbitt led the deputy through several jurisdictions before the California Highway Patrol took over, MacBeth said.

CHP officers tried to use the precision immobilization technique — the PIT maneuver — in which an officer intentionally makes contact with a fleeing vehicle to force it to stop. But Babbitt kept going, MacBeth said.

MacBeth said Babbitt headed into a parking lot in the 2500 block of Sweetwater Road in National City, struck a parked vehicle, jumped out and attempted to run away. Sheriff’s deputies caught up to him and he was arrested on suspicion of felony evading, possession of burglary tools, possession of illegal weapons, possession of narcotics for sale and committing a crime while out on bond.

The passenger, 26-year-old Amanda Salama, was arrested on suspicion of possession of narcotics for sale, destroying or concealing evidence and committing a crime while out on bond, according to MacBeth and jail records.

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