Passenger in a Stolen Car Fleeing from Deputies Dies in Collision
Photo: Third Street and Sterling Avenue
HIGHLAND — A joyride and subsequent police chase led to the death of the passenger in the stolen car over the July 4th holiday weekend. A San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department Central Station deputy pulled over a stolen BMW sedan on July 5th at 6:37 AM on Third Street near Sterling Avenue.
The driver of the vehicle was Timothy Johnston (25) of San Bernardino. An anonymous female passenger was in the car with the suspect.
Suddenly, Johnston fled the traffic stop, speeding north on Palm Ave into the City of Highland. The emergency vehicle followed the high-speed getaway car.
As the driver lost control of the car near the intersection of Palm Avenue and Nona Avenue, he sideswiped a Toyota Tundra and collided with a powerline pole.
The car flipped onto its roof. Even with the car upside down, Johnston was able to find his way out of the vehicle and continued his flight on foot.
The suspect was soon spotted hiding in a nearby neighborhood. Johnston was arrested without further incident and was taken to a local hospital for treatment of injuries suffered at the scene.
The anonymous female passenger in the stolen BMW was not so lucky, as she was pronounced dead at the hospital. Her identity is withheld pending notification of next of kin.
As for the sideswiped Toyota Tundra, the driver and passenger were fortunate to have escaped injury.
For “felony evasion resulting in a fatal traffic collision,” Investigators said, “Timothy Johnston has been booked at the Central Detention Center for Vehicular Manslaughter with Gross Negligence, Evading a Peace Officer with no Regard for Public Safety, Possession of a Stolen Vehicle, Vehicle Theft, Burglary, and for an unrelated no-bail warrant for vehicle theft.”