A mostly low-speed highway pursuit that started in Los Angeles shortly before 7 p.m. Tuesday last more than six hours, forcing some police officers to pull over and refill their gas tanks.
When it finally ended in southwestern San Bernardino County Wednesday morning, driver Michael Zinkiewitz was booked on two burglary warrants and one count of felony evasion, according to the Los Angeles Times.
The adventure reportedly began when the LAPD’s 77th Gang Enforcement Detail pulled over Zinkiewitz’s white sedan and the 35-year-old man reached under his seat, leading police to believe he had a weapon. Zinkiewitz then pulled away and the cat and mouse game was underway.
Aerial video shows Zinkiewitz stopping and starting as several police cruisers followed closely. He also drives the wrong way down at least one street and seems to go through a red light. The car’s blinkers were on through much of the pursuit that happened at speeds of around 20 mph.
— NBC Los Angeles (@NBCLA) February 3, 2021Finally, after more than six hours, the bizarre slow-speed pursuit comes to an end in Ontario, with the driver getting out of the vehicle. https://t.co/5gWWWF722h pic.twitter.com/Uh4bxDR1p1
Authorities were in contact with Zinkiewitz’s family and were informed that the San Pedro man suffered from mental illness. They were told he was having a “psychotic episode,” according to KTLA. Zinkiewitz reportedly called his mother during the pursuit to say he was unsure why police were following him. She remained on the phone with her son and with police throughout the night.
A spiked strip stretched across the roadway damaged Zinkiewitz’s tires, eventually bringing his car to a halt. Zinkiewitz’s brother worked with a crisis team to negotiate the purportedly trouble man’s peaceful surrender and end the drama. No gun was found in his vehicle.