Two men were arrested late Tuesday night after a short vehicle pursuit with officers that began in the area of East 27th Street and McKee Road.
The incident happened shortly before 11 p.m. after an officer spotted a car run a stop sign, according to Sgt. Alan Ward.
When the officer tried to pull the car over, the vehicle stopped and the passenger jumped out and ran. The driver turned off the car's headlights and sped away westbound on East 27th Street.
Meanwhile, officers chased the passenger, identified as 26-year-old Lawrence Grant, on foot. Police also reported seeing Grant toss a gun into bushes as he ran. Officers caught up with Grant and arrested him. Officers also found the loaded handgun in the bushes.
The suspects' car continued westbound on East 27th without its headlights at very high speeds. As officers responded to the area, the suspect vehicle crashed into an incoming police patrol car and struck the curb.
The driver, 28-year-old Adrian Noriega, ran from the car but was arrested nearby, police said.
The California Highway Patrol assisted in the investigation of the crash. Lt. Bimley West said no officers were hurt.
Noriega and Grant were booked into the Merced County Jail on suspicion of being felons in possession of a firearm, resisting arrest, hit and run, and gang enhancements.
Police are asking anyone with information to call (209) 385-4702 or the automated tip-line at (209) 385-4725.
Tips can be sent via anonymous text message to the department by dialing "TIP411" (847411) and including the word "ComVIP" as the keyword in the text message.
— Sun-Star staff