Sat, Mar 23 2013 12:00 PM Posted By: Neal Putnam
A Chula Vista man who doused himself with gasoline while fleeing from sheriff’s deputies has been sentenced to one year in jail for auto theft.
The Sheriff’s Department said Oscar Edwardo Torres, 33, will be released on June 13 after getting credit for 90 days he has already served. He was placed on three years probation by El Cajon Superior Court Judge Charles Ervin, who fined him $1,234.
Sheriff’s deputies received a call Jan. 14 about a suspicious person who entered several residences in the 17000 block of Ridgeview Lane in Ramona. The suspect had his face and arms painted black.
Torres stole a Ford F-150 truck that was parked in one driveway and drove off, but he was followed by deputies on state Route 78.
Deputies say Torres began tossing stuff out the window and doused himself with gasoline while driving. He lit a towel on fire and threw it on the freeway. Deputies used a spike strip and he pulled over after the 20-minute chase.
Torres refused to exit the vehicle so deputies used a chemical agent and also a canine unit before he was arrested.
They took him to a hospital and he was later booked into jail. Deputies gave no motive for the strange behavior. The
Probation Department recommended probation and the prosecutor did not ask for a prison term after he pleaded guilty to auto theft.
© 2009 The Star-News