Murder suspect fleeing police crashes into car in Brooklyn Center, injures four

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Police say an attempt to arrest a murder suspect Friday afternoon in Brooklyn Center turned into a chase that ended with a high-speed crash with another vehicle with five occupants inside. Four of those occupants were transported to the hospital.

According to the Brooklyn Center Police Department, officers received information around 4:20 p.m. that a man wanted for a murder warrant was in Brooklyn Center.

Police found the man in a vehicle and deployed a device to deflate the suspect vehicle’s tires. They also called in a Minnesota State Patrol helicopter to help track the car “from a safe distance.”

However, the device failed to stop the vehicle, and the suspect fled the scene. Police chased the suspect vehicle through residential streets while trying to keep it in view. Police say at one point, an officer relayed to dispatch that the suspect was traveling 70 mph in a 30 mph zone.

A spokesperson for the Minnesota Department of Public Safety says the State Patrol helicopter was dispatched only one minute before the suspect crashed into an unrelated vehicle at 53rd and Humboldt avenues and could not make it to the scene in time.

Police say there were four bystanders injured in the second vehicle, and at least one person suffered a “significant injury.” All four occupants of that vehicle and the suspect were taken to the hospital for treatment, and they are all reportedly in stable condition.

The murder suspect remains at the hospital and will be released into police custody.

Larry Romanko, a resident in the area, told 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS he first heard the police sirens and then the sound of the collision. He described coming outside to see squad cars surrounding the crash scene.

“They had the vehicle penned in, demanded that the driver get out of the car,” he said. Romanko went on to say that officers then approached the suspect’s vehicle with guns drawn and eventually had to break a window to remove him and place him in handcuffs.

Meanwhile, Romanko said the other car was flipped on its roof, and he saw officers struggling to remove the occupants from inside. And soon after the suspect was pulled from his car, it burst into flames, and first responders had to put it out with fire extinguishers.

Romanko says high-speed traffic at this intersection is a common occurrence.

“More than once we’ve seen them blow through here 50, 60 miles per hour. They just don’t stop,” Romanko said. “And apparently, this involved a police chase, so it’s a little different, but people don’t stop at this intersection. So it’s only a matter of time [before] something like this happened.”

The Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office is investigating the pursuit.

Editors note: this article initially reported that a mother and three children were inside the second, unrelated vehicle the suspect crashed into. Police have since released corrected information, saying that there were five occupants in the second vehicle. The corrected release does not indicate the ages of the five occupants. This article has been updated to reflect that change in information.