PALA MESA (CNS)- A 46-year-old man was behind bars today after leading authorities on a nearly two-hour pursuit from San Bernardino County to Interstate 15 in northern San Diego County, where he refused to exit his car for over three more hours, authorities said.
The incident began about 5:30 p.m. Thursday, when San Bernardino County Sheriff’s deputies responded to a report of a person in a vehicle possibly doing drugs outside a home in Barstow, California Highway Patrol Officer Juan Escobar said.
Deputies tried to contact the man in the 2004 Saturn sedan, later identified as 46-year-old Ethan Francis Yoffe of El Cajon, but he fled and eventually entered southbound I-15, Escobar said.
CHP officers took over the pursuit on southbound I-15 and followed Yoffe until he stopped on the right shoulder south of state Route 76 shortly after 7:20 p.m., the officer said.
Based on the information that Yoffe was allegedly armed with a bolt-action rifle, authorities shut down both directions of I-15 and both directions of SR-76.
Authorities attempted to get Yoffe to exit the Saturn, but he refused for more than three hours, Escobar said. CHP officers finally took Yoffe into custody without incident at about 10:30 p.m.
No weapon was found in the vehicle, Escobar said. All lanes on I-15 and SR-76 were reopened by 10:45 p.m.
Yoffe was booked into Adelanto Detention Center in San Bernardino County on suspicion of felony evading, according to jail records. He was being held in lieu of $100,000 bail pending arraignment, scheduled for Monday afternoon.
Copyright 2021, City News Service, Inc.
UPDATE: Thursday, June 3, at 10 p.m.
BREAKING: CHP chase leads to standoff on I-15
No new details have been released in the standoff on southbound Interstate 15 near the exit for Highway 76.
Reports from the scene say that traffic remains backed up for those driving, however many headed southbound are taking Highway 395 in an effort to get around the incident.
This is a breaking news story and will be updated as more information becomes available.
Details are scant regarding a chase along Interstate 15 that led to a hard closure of both north and southbound lanes of the freeway near Highway 76 earlier this evening.
According to Officer Mike Lassig with the Temecula CHP office, there was a chase that led to the Temecula CHP area and went into Oceanside CHP area where the chase ended in a standoff between officers and the suspect.
“Riverside CHP was pursuing a vehicle, Temecula CHP took over when it came into our jurisdiction and we turned it over to the Oceanside CHP,” Lassig said. “It came to a stop on the 15 near the 76.”
According to reports from the scene, there is currently a standoff between CHP officers and the driver who is still not in custody.
Lassig said he had no information as to the reason for the pursuit.
“It’s ongoing now. It’s a fluid situation,” Lassig said. “We have CHP officers on scene and hopefully we are going to get this taken care of in a peaceful manner.”
According to reports from the scene the CHP is escorting northbound vehicles around the incident from the 76 east to the on ramp of the 15 northbound, but Lassig advises for motorists to avoid the area.
“Traffic is stopped both northbound and southbound right now, so we are asking all motorists to please find alternate routes and check back for more details on the road closures,” Lassig said.