Multiple law enforcement agencies in Orange County were involved in the pursuit of Antonio Padilla, a wanted felon. The high-speed chase on Monday (February 26) evening caused several hit-and-runs and a carjacking before it ended violently in Irvine. Read all about it here.
Who Is Antonio Padilla?
Antonio Padilla Jr., 37, is a native of Riverside County and was wanted for parole violation after assaulting an officer with a deadly weapon last week.
On Monday evening, he led police on a high-speed chase when undercover detectives from Garden Grove Police Department spotted him. At that time, Padilla was driving a black GMC pickup truck.
When officers attempted to stop him, he took off, and the pursuit began around 5:30 p.m. in Garden Grove, before taking a violent turn.
Padilla drove in the emergency lane of the freeway where he blew through red lights. The chase involved several hit-and-runs when Padilla crashed into at least two other vehicles while trying to evade authorities.
The felon eventually ditched his truck to carjack a black Audi SUV at an apartment complex in Irvine. The carjacking victim was a 22-year-old woman from Irvine.
According to reports, the victim’s brother, Ricky Kozloski, drove up at that moment and saw the carjacking. Kozloski said he was waving to his sister as he was coming home from work in his car. She was in her own SUV when he noticed the driver of a black truck acting strange.
“He just was like honking the horn behind me,” said Kozloski. “She was struggling to not let the guy into the car.”
“I saw that he was taking my sister out of the car and I just reacted and tried to help,” Ricky Kozloski said. Padilla threw the woman out of the car and jumped behind the wheel.
When Kozloski tried to intervene, the felon sped off. Kosloski was almost pinned between the Audi and Padilla’s truck. His sister was nearly run over by Padilla.
The chase continued for 10 more minutes before Padilla abandoned the Audi at an industrial park in Irvine. He then got out and took off on foot, but didn’t manage to get far.
A K-9 and a few officers took him down, bringing the 20-minute chase to an end.
Padilla was treated for dog bites and wounds sustained during the arrest. Kozloski and his sister are reportedly unharmed.