Seemingly Suicidal Motorist Leads Cross-County Police Chase

SAN DIEGO (CNS) - An apparently suicidal woman led police on a nearly hourlong road chase today from the South Bay to northern San Diego County, where she finally pulled over and swallowed pills and stabbed herself before being taken into custody, authorities said. 

Officers responding to a report of a woman threatening to shoot herself in the 2300 block of East Eighth Street in National City arrived in the neighborhood shortly after 1 p.m. to see the person in question driving off in a Nissan sedan with a male passenger in the back seat, according to police. 

When the patrol personnel tried to pull her over, the driver refused to yield, instead entering Interstate 805 and fleeing to the north, NCPD Lt. Robert Rounds said. After merging onto state Route 15, the woman passed through central and northern San Diego, generally traveling at typical freeway speeds, Rounds said.In the Rancho Bernardo area, the Nissan ran over a spike strip that had been stretched across the freeway by the California Highway Patrol, winding up with a flat tire. Nonetheless, the fleeing woman continued on into Escondido, where she exited near state Route 78. 

She proceeded to flee a short distance on city streets before pulling into a commercial parking lot in the 700 block of East Valley Parkway at about 2 p.m., the lieutenant said. There, police were able to use their cruisers to surround her car and ``box her in,'' Rounds said. Police watched as the woman, seated in the vehicle and ignoring officers' orders to surrender, used an unknown type of sharp object to slash herself and appeared to ingest some type of pills. Her passenger, meanwhile, got out of the sedan along with a dog that also had been along for the ride and was taken into custody. 

Moments later, the woman emerged from the car and was detained following a brief struggle with officers. She was then taken to a hospital for an evaluation and treatment of her injuries, which appeared to be superficial, according to Rounds. 

It was unclear if the woman, whose name was withheld, would be admitted to a mental-health facility or possibly booked into county jail on suspicion of criminal charges related to the pursuit, the lieutenant said.

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