Santa Barbara- S County

Santa Maria Pursuit

SANTA MARIA, Calif. - According to the Santa Maria Police Department a Northern California gang member is behind bars this morning after he drove his car into a Santa Maria police cruiser and led the officer on a chase.

It happened Saturday afternoon on the 1000 block of North Bradley Road. Police say it started as a regular traffic stop when the driver, 35-year-old Marcello Alvarez, a Salinas resident, reversed his car toward the officer.

They say he ended up crashing into the patrol vehicle causing moderate damage. Alvarez then led police officers on  a short chase, ending when he crashed into  a parked car. He then took off running but eventually was arrested.

In Alvarez's car officers found a loaded rifle, ammunition and methamphetamine.

Alvarez's bail has been set at more than a million dollars.

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