Attempting to leap from moving car during Riverside pursuit, man fatally injured

RIVERSIDE, Calif. — Authorities say a man who led Riverside police officers on a high speed pursuit was killed when he attempted to jump from his moving vehicle and struck his head on a fire hydrant Sunday evening, Aug. 1

Witnesses later said the fleeing man was traveling about 50 mph when he made the fatal leap from his vehicle during last night’s pursuit, which ended in the 9400 block of Garfield Street, east of Van Buren Boulevard.


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At around 9 p.m., City of Riverside police officers attempted to conduct a vehicle enforcement stop on Van Buren Boulevard near the 91 Freeway when the driver of the sedan fled from officers at a high rate of speed, Officer Ryan Railsback later said of the deadly incident.

As the pursuit continued onto Garfield Street from Van Buren Boulevard the fleeing man, whose name has not yet been released, suddenly opened his door and jumped from the moving vehicle. As he jumped from the sedan, the suspect reportedly struck his head on a fire hydrant, suffering major traumatic head injuries.

A witness later told Raincross Media the suspect was traveling about 50 miles per hour down Garfield with RPD in pursuit when the man opened his door and leaped from the speeding vehicle. He succumbed to critical injuries at the scene after striking his head on a solid object, possibly a fire hydrant, according to officials. Lee Chow photo

Officers immediately began life-saving efforts and requested City of Riverside Fire Department and AMR to the scene. Officers continued CPR until they were relieved by paramedics. However, the man ultimately succumbed to his injuries and passed away at the scene, according to Railsback.

A witness at the scene who declined to be identified later told Raincross Media the suspect was traveling down Garfield with RPD in pursuit at approximately 50 miles per hour just before the fatal leap.

She said that “the driver appeared to jump from the vehicle while it was still in motion” and that the man “struck an object on the side of the road”, since described by Railsback as “possibly a fire hydrant”.

The witness said the still continuing vehicle eventually came to rest after striking a parked vehicle and utility pole.

Garfield Street was closed between Van Buren and Castleman Street during the duration of the subsequent hours-long death investigation. The street has since been reopened.

Further details regarding the fatal incident or Riverside PD’s ongoing investigation were not immediately available.

This is a developing story that will be updated as new information becomes available.

Contact the writer:

Trevor Montgomery, 50, moved in 2017 to the Intermountain area of Shasta County from Riverside County and runs Riverside County News Source (RCNS) and Shasta County News Source (SCNS).

Additionally, he writes or has written for several other news organizations; including Riverside County-based newspapers Valley News, Valley Chronicle, Anza Valley Outlook, and Hemet & San Jacinto Chronicle; the Bonsall/Fallbrook Village News in San Diego County; and Mountain Echo in Shasta County. He is also a regular contributor to Thin Blue Line TV and Law Enforcement News Network and has had his stories featured on news stations throughout the Southern California and North State regions.

Trevor spent 10 years in the U.S. Army as an Orthopedic Specialist before joining the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department in 1998. He was medically retired after losing his leg, breaking his back, and suffering both spinal cord and brain injuries in an off-duty accident. (Click here to see segment of Discovery Channel documentary of Trevor’s accident.)

During his time with the sheriff’s department, Trevor worked at several different stations; including Robert Presley Detention Center, Southwest Station in Temecula, Hemet/Valle Vista Station, Ben Clark Public Safety Training Center, and Lake Elsinore Station; along with other locations.

Trevor’s assignments included Corrections, Patrol, DUI Enforcement, Boat and Personal Water-Craft based Lake Patrol, Off-Road Vehicle Enforcement, Problem Oriented Policing Team, and Personnel/Background Investigations. He finished his career while working as a Sex Crimes and Child Abuse Investigator and was a court-designated expert in child abuse and child sex-related crimes.

Trevor has been married for more than 30 years and was a foster parent to more than 60 children over 13 years. He is now an adoptive parent and his “fluid family” includes 13 children and 18 grandchildren.


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