Police pursuit
The crashed Tacoma truck, left, and the SUV hit as the police pursuit ended on Sunday. Photo credit: OnScene.TV

A police chase that began near Serra Mesa ended Sunday when a driver, possibly under the influence, allegedly ran a red light south of El Cajon Boulevard and slammed into an SUV.

The chase, less than five miles, ended at 35th Street and Orange Avenue at about 8:50 a.m., according to OnScene.TV. It had begun after an undercover San Diego County Sheriff’s deputy who had been monitoring a stolen Toyota Tacoma on Escondido Avenue watched a female enter the truck and leave the area.

The undercover deputy followed her and called for marked Sheriff’s vehicles to assist. The uniformed deputies attempted to stop the truck, but she fled at a high rate of speed, ending up on southbound Interstate 15.

The female driver exited onto El Cajon and continued to flee through surface streets before allegedly running the red at the intersection near City Heights and hitting a Toyota SUV on the driver’s side.

The impact caused the SUV to collide with another Toyota, a Prius. The Tacoma left the roadway and hit two electrical junction boxes before banging into a metal fence. One of the boxes, sent flying, damaged another vehicle.

Deputies immediately detained the truck’s driver, who they suspected of being under the influence of a narcotic. They sent her to a local hospital due to the possible drug use and for minor injuries she suffered in the crash.

The solo occupant in the SUV, a male, was alert and speaking to first responders after the crash. The male driver of the Prius complained of pain, but preferred not to be sent to the hospital.

Sheriff’s Sgt. Bill Munsch described the SUV driver’s injuries as minor and said he was sent to Scripps Mercy Hospital for treatment.

Munsch identified the driver arrested by deputies as Jamie Bender, 25, who deputies booked into Las Colinas Detention facility on multiple felony charges, including vehicle theft. Her bail was set at $100,000.

San Diego police and Fire-Rescue personnel also responded to the scene.

Updated 7:10 p.m. April 10, 2022