The Vista Detention Facility. Photo by Chris Stone

Two suspected gang members were behind bars Wednesday for allegedly threatening a motorist with a gun on a northern San Diego County street, yanking him out of his car and stealing it.

The violent carjacking in the 900 block of Postal Way in Vista took place shortly before 3 p.m. Tuesday, according to sheriff’s officials.

While fleeing the scene of the crime, the thieves got into a crash with another vehicle, authorities said. A short time later, a sheriff’s detective who happened to be in the area spotted the damaged stolen vehicle and radioed its location.

Following a brief road chase with deputies, the driver of the stolen car crashed into a curb, after which he jumped out and bolted along with his accomplice. Patrol personnel caught up with the pair nearby a short time later and took them into custody.

The suspects, Ricardo Arnulfo Hernandez, 30, and Joseph Maldonado Laxton, 26, were booked into county jail in Vista on suspicion of various charges, including carjacking, hit-and-run, making criminal threats and participating in a criminal street gang.

— City News Service

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