A police cruiser. Photo by John Schreiber.
A police cruiser. Photo by John Schreiber.


Charges of evading arrest and vehicle theft were filed Friday against a Riverside woman accused of leading deputies on a high-speed chase from Thousand Palms to Cabazon in a stolen van, then holding them at bay for about an hour before being taken into custody.

Tessa DeLeon, 38, sped away from deputies about 3:30 p.m. Wednesday after she was spotted in the stolen vehicle near Ramon and Varner roads, according to sheriff’s Sgt. Thomas Brewster.

She drove onto westbound Interstate 10, triggering a chase that reached speeds of more than 100 mph before getting off the freeway in Cabazon, where the vehicle came to a stop but DeLeon refused to surrender, Brewster said. The standoff, which led authorities to block off Seminole Drive near Malki Road, ended peacefully around 5:20 p.m.

In addition to felony counts of evading arrest and vehicle theft, DeLeon faces an allegation of being a repeat vehicle theft offender.

DeLeon also has prior Riverside County convictions for receiving stolen property and possession of controlled substances, according to court records.

She was being held in lieu of $100,000 bail pending arraignment this afternoon.

–City News Service

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