SOUTH GATE—Alexis Leondardo Avinai, a 29-year-old felon on post-release community supervision, was taken into custody at gunpoint after a three-hour pursuit through Los Angeles and Orange Counties on Wednesday, April 24.
Avinai led officials from the South Gate Police Department and the California Highway Patrol on a chase throughout the cities of Huntington Park, Lynwood, South Los Angeles, Buena Park, Anaheim, and South Gate. During the chase, Avinai’s girlfriend was in the passenger seat of Avinai’s Honda Accord. A witness reported seeing the suspect strike the woman.
South Gate Police Department Captain Darren Arakawa indicated that the woman struggled with the suspect, even attempting to open the passenger door and escape, but was unable to do so because the car was in motion. Avinai ran red lights at high speeds and drove on the wrong side of the street in order to evade police. He almost hit several cars and pedestrians during the pursuit, and at one point drove through a park and plowed through a fence.
The pursuit culminated in the parking of a 99 Cents store in Rowland Heights, where the suspect ran inside the store and was handcuffed and taken into custody by police. The woman was found unresponsive, but breathing inside Avinai’s car. She was taken to local hospital to be treated for minor injuries she sustained to the face.
According to the South Gate Police Department, Avinai was booked on suspicion of domestic violence and felony evading. He is being held on $125,000 bail.