A 20-year-old gang member accused of leading authorities on a high-speed chase, and allegedly ditching a gun and ammunition along the way, was behind bars Friday.
Brian Rafael Rodriguez of Coachella was booked into the Blythe jail Thursday evening on suspicion of felony reckless evading, violating the terms of his probation and for being a felon in possession of both a gun and ammunition, with bail set at $100,000.
Sheriff’s deputies attempted a traffic stop on Rodriguez’s vehicle about 5 p.m., but he sped off and they lost sight of him, according to the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department Sgt. Paul Heredia.
Soon afterward, a witness reported seeing the driver park the vehicle at an apartment complex in the 84000 block of Avenue 51, then take off on foot, he said. Deputies arrested him nearby without incident.
Another witness reported seeing “the driver of the vehicle throw a rifle and a backpack out of the window as it drove past a residence in the 50000 block of Chiapas Drive,” according to a sheriff’s statement that identified Rodriguez as a convicted felon and documented gang member.
He is scheduled to appear at the Larson Justice Center in Indio as soon as Tuesday, jail records show.