Pursuit that traveled through San Jacinto valley ends with arrest in Hemet

CORRECTION: An early version of this article included a photo of a man who was involved in a different Riverside County Sheriff’s pursuit of another stolen vehicle, who was not involved in this separate and unrelated incident.

SAN JACINTO, Calif., — A wanted parolee-at-large with warrants for three counts of spousal abuse/domestic violence, child endangerment, battery, and violation of state parole was apprehended after a dangerous pursuit of a stolen vehicle Saturday morning, Jan. 15.

Witnesses to the pursuit have said the chase began in San Jacinto and continued south toward the Cactus Valley area before traveling north again and ending in Hemet.

Although pursuing deputies terminated their chase due to the fleeing man’s dangerous driving actions and for the safety of citizens, the alleged suspect was taken into custody after a Sheriff’s Aviation Crew followed the stolen vehicle from overhead and alerted deputies once the man came to a stop and fled from the vehicle on foot in a Hemet residential neighborhood.


Boy, 13, ID’d after fatally struck while riding bike in Corona

Local man, 90, ID’d after deadly Indio crash that injured four others

Clinton Keith corridor traffic enforcement operation yields 108 citations

National Mountain Biking Champion from Menifee dies in Temecula motorcycle crash – Girlfriend critically injured

UPDATE: Two men arrested after Old Town Temecula shooting leaves Hemet father dead, two others injured

Driver dies after solo-vehicle crash in Jurupa Valley

At around 11:30 a.m., a deputy from the San Jacinto Sheriff’s Station spotted a stolen vehicle being driven in the area of Ramona Expressway and Lake Park Drive, Riverside Sheriff’s Sergeant J. Wade Lenton later said of the incident and arrest.

A pursuit was initiated when the driver, since identified as Pedro Pineda Jr., 29, of San Jose, refused to yield to the deputy’s lights and siren and sped away.

As the chase continued through San Jacinto, Pineda drove in an extremely reckless manner without regard for the safety of pursuing deputies or other citizens and a Sheriff’s helicopter was requested to take over the chase.

Launched from the nearby Hemet-Ryan Airport and arriving overhead less than four minutes into the pursuit, the Sheriff’s Aviation Crew was able to assume the chase, allowing patrol deputies to back off and discontinue the ground pursuit.

With ground deputies no longer pursuing the stolen vehicle, the driver headed into the city of Hemet, where he abandoned the stolen vehicle in the 700 block of La Jolla Avenue, northeast of W. Devonshire and N. Palm avenues.

With guidance and direction provided from overhead, ground deputies were quickly able to locate and apprehend Pineda a short distance from the stolen vehicle on N. Palm Avenue.

SEE ALSO: Sheriff’s Mounted Patrol-led enforcement operation in San Jacinto leads to 28 warrants served, 13 arrests

After his arrest, Pineda was transported to the Larry D. Smith Correctional Facility in Banning on suspicion of vehicle theft, recklessly evading and resisting arrest. He was also booked on warrants for three counts of spousal abuse/domestic violence, child endangerment, battery, and violation of state parole.

Online jail records indicate he remains in custody where he is being held without bail. He is scheduled to be arraigned at the Southwest Justice Center on Jan. 20.

Anyone with information regarding this investigation is encouraged to call the San Jacinto Sheriff Station at (951) 766-2400. Callers can refer to incident file number I220150039 and can remain anonymous.

Contact the writer: [email protected]

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.