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Police quash burglary rumors in earlier chase, shelter-in-place

A shelter-in-place alert for residents living near Altamount Drive and La Cresta Road in Orinda was lifted after about 20 minutes Monday afternoon, following the arrest of a suspect who fled into the neighborhood.

At about 11:50 a.m., Orinda police issued the alert after a man fleeing an attempted traffic stop in Moraga crashed his car at the intersection and ran from the scene, according to Moraga Police Chief Jon King.

King said:

“It started out as a reckless driving issue when one of my officers attempted to stop somebody on Moraga Way.” 

Instead of pulling over, however, the suspect allegedly accelerated to speeds of up to 95 mph and started passing other vehicles on the right shoulder, King said.

The officer backed off the chase in the interest of safety and soon came upon the crashed car, he said.

Officers from Moraga, Orinda and Lafayette, as well as deputies from the Contra Costa County Sheriff’s Office helped look for the suspect, who was found at about 1:30 p.m. hiding in a small barn about a quarter mile from the crash site, King said.

During the search, calls came in from neighbors with tips and updates about where they had last seen the suspect.

King said:

“We got a number of calls from people. … I can’t say enough good things about the folks who called to provide information.”

It’s unclear why the man chose to flee the traffic stop, he said, adding that reports of a home invasion or other violent incidents leading to the chase are unfounded.

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