Oakland, CA

Sheriff: Armed, wanted fugitive was smoking meth during dangerous 100+ MPH police chase

Golden Gate Media

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The suspect had an outstanding warrant out from the U.S. Marshal's Service.Placer Co. Sheriff

A wanted fugitive from the San Francisco Bay Area is accused of leading law enforcement on a dangerous meth-fueled pursuit where speeds hit in excess of 100 miles per hour, sheriff’s investigators stated.

The chase happened in Placer County on the way to Lake Tahoe.

“On June 26th at 7:30 p.m., a Placer County Sheriff’s deputy attempted a traffic stop on eastbound Interstate 80 near the Meadow Vista exit,” the agency stated. “The driver refused to stop, leading the deputy on a high-speed pursuit reaching speeds up to 105 mph. The California Highway Patrol joined the pursuit and used a spike strip, causing a flat tire. The suspect kept driving on the flat tire, which caused sparks, resulting in the vehicle catching fire.”

Despite smoke pouring out of his car, deputies said Roberts did not pull over. He allegedly kept going.

“The suspect continued fleeing with his car on fire and eventually exited at Donner Pass Road in Truckee, where he was arrested,” investigators added. “Deputies identified the suspect as 31-year old Gavin Roberts of Hayward. Roberts had an outstanding U.S. Marshals' felony warrant.”

When deputies searched the suspect’s vehicle, they came up with a bonanza of illicit and illegal items.

“Inside Roberts’ vehicle, deputies found two glass pipes, a baton, and metal knuckles,” the sheriff’s office stated. “Deputies also had reason to believe Roberts was smoking methamphetamine during the pursuit. Roberts was arrested for felony evading, delaying a peace officer, possession of drug paraphernalia, driving under the influence of a controlled substance, and felon in possession of metal knuckles and a baton.”

Chases along Interstate 80 in Placer County are rare, but not unheard of. Locals thanked law enforcement for apprehending the driver of the car.

“Now what was that nice man going to do with the metal knuckles and the baton?” A commenter wrote. “Hope this is his rock bottom and he does better. Thank you, PCSO.”

“Thankfully all the officers are safe and no one else was hurt in this guy's reckless cracked-out state!” Another added. “So blessed we have great officers to keep us safe! Great job!”

“Thank goodness nobody was hurt,” one area resident wrote. “At least his car is burnt up. Maybe he won’t be able to drive for a bit. This act was reckless with no regard for others' safety and well-being.”

High-speed police chases in excess of 100 miles per hour have become more and more common throughout the San Francisco Bay Area and Sacramento regions.

The CHP’s helicopter helped apprehend the driver of a Chevrolet Corvette who led officers on a pursuit that hit speeds of 130 miles per hour through Oakland. The driver was arrested after crashing his car.

“On July 3, CHP H-30 assisted with a pursuit in the CHP Oakland Area," the CHP Golden Gate Air Operations Division stated in a Facebook post that showed a video of the pursuit. "After fleeing officers for over 50 minutes, the suspect was taken into custody after being involved in a non-injury collision. CHP H-30 and Oakland Police Argus Helicopters were able to follow the suspect from above allowing ground officers to follow at a safe distance. At the time of the collision, there was no law enforcement vehicle behind the suspect. The Oakland CHP is investing this incident."

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