Two Suspects Killed, One Injured in Chase and Shootout with Visalia Police
VISALIA – An attempt by police to pull over a vehicle for a traffic violation ended in a gunfight that left two of the car’s occupants dead.
Around 11:28 p.m. on Friday, Visalia police officers attempted to pull over a 1998 Hyundai sedan for a suspected traffic violation in the area of Locust Street and Grove Avenue. The car sped away, sparking what would become a six-minute police chase.
The pursuit began on surface streets, but then the suspects entered Highway 99 with the officers behind them. The chase continued at high speeds, according to the Visalia Police Department, but ended when the Hyundai crashed exiting the highway at Drive 69. The car landed on its roof in a dirt field.
At that point, three males got out of the car and started shooting at the pursuing officers, a police report said. Three officers returned fire, killing two of the suspects. The third suspect who exited the car was wounded and transferred to Community Regional Medical Center in Fresno.
The other two occupants of the car, a man and a teenage girl, stayed in the car and were not hit by the gunfire. Police arrested them and the wounded suspect on suspicion of two counts of murder and three counts of attempted murder of a police officer, even though they didn’t fire any shots.
Visalia authorities have yet to release the names of any of the five suspects.
The Tulare County Sheriff’s Office is handling the investigation
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