MID-CITY — Santa Monica police officers shut down several streets Tuesday afternoon as they hunted and eventually captured a man who allegedly struck his girlfriend during an argument near Wilshire Boulevard and 20th Street.

The victim, an employee at Santa Monica-UCLA Medical Center, suffered minor cuts to her hand, most likely the result of fighting with her boyfriend over her car keys, said SMPD Sgt. Richard Lewis.

The victim, 34, was uncooperative, however, officers were able to gather enough evidence to book the suspect for domestic violence. He was tentatively identified as Wesley Stokes, 27, of Long Beach, Lewis said.

Officers responded to Alley 19 between Wilshire Boulevard and Arizona Avenue at approximately 4 p.m. after receiving a call about a man chasing a woman. Officers said Stokes chased his girlfriend from her parked car to the corner of Wilshire and 20th and slapped her “a couple of times.”

The victim ran back toward her car and the two began to fight over her car keys. When the suspect heard the sound of sirens, he allegedly took off running southbound down the alley.

Police set up a perimeter that stretched from 20th Street west to 18th Street and from Santa Monica Boulevard north to Arizona Avenue.

Roughly 30 minutes later they located Stokes hiding underneath a car that was parked in a carport in the 1300 block of 20th Street. Streets were reopened shortly thereafter.

kevinh@www.smdp.com

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