Officers on Monday continued to search for a man accusing of leading Lodi police on a chase that resulted in three severely damaged police cars.
Police are looking for Emiliano Rivera, 38, who police say is a transient known in Lodi, as the suspected driver of a the pick-up truck that rammed into a police car and attempted to destroy three others, Lodi Police Sgt. David Griffin said.
Officers Jose Nueño and Nick Rafiq, from Lodi police’s gang enforcement unit, were checking out a residence in the 300 block of Flora when they noticed a white Chevy Avalanche parked nearby, Griffin said.
The pursuit began at about 5:30 p.m. Saturday, when Nueño and Rafiq saw the truck with expired registration parked in front of a residence connected to gang activity in the 300 block of Flora Street, police said.
The officers tried to talk to the man sitting in the parked car, identified as Rivera, but he sped away to Lawrence Avenue and Main Street, according to police. The driver stopped in the middle of the road and then went into reverse, accelerating into Rafiq’s and Nueño’s car and destroying it, Griffin said.
As officers in three patrol cars arrived to provide backup, Rivera attempted to ram into the oncoming cars, police said. The backup officers tried to evade Rivera by driving onto the curb, causing flat tires in two of the patrol cars, Griffin said. The pursuit was called off as the suspect sped south on Main Street, he said.
Anyone who has seen Rivera or has any information about the incident may call Lodi police at 209-333-6727 or Lodi Crime Stoppers at 209-333-6771. Callers may remain anonymous and are eligible for a reward through the Crime Stoppers program.