SUNSET PARK ‚Äî Santa Monica police have three suspects in custody following a pursuit that led them through Venice and back, finally ending near Clover Park, authorities said.
The pursuit began around 2:15 p.m. Thursday on the 1300 block of Wilshire Boulevard when police received a report of a shoplifter in custody at Vons, said SMPD Sgt. Richard Lewis.
A woman allegedly tried to steal alcohol and was detained by store security. While waiting for police to arrive, the Vons employees were confronted by two men who are believed to have been waiting for the woman to come out with the booze. One of the men pulled out a pistol and pointed it at the employees, Lewis said.
The two fled without the female and were immediately followed by police. While chasing the suspects through Venice, the driver hit a parked car and, at some point, the passenger jumped out and ran onto the Boardwalk. He was later apprehended.
The driver continued through Venice, eventually giving up as he reached a dead-end on 25th Street near Ashland Avenue in Santa Monica, Lewis said. A witness told the Daily Press that the driver was smoking what appeared to be a marijuana cigarette just before police took him into custody.
Lewis said the suspect also was drinking alcohol before his arrest.
While police searched the car, they found a cell phone and what looked like a woman‚Äôs purse.
Police said the suspect threw the handgun out of the car. It was recovered on the 1800 block of Delaware Avenue.
Police did not release the names of the suspects by presstime.
Alex Vejar contributed to this report.