BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) — Two men wanted for murder led police on a multi-county, high-speed chase that ended here in Kern County.
The chase started around 5 p.m. Wednesday in San Luis Obispo after the driver failed to yield to San Luis Obispo Sheriff’s Office deputies and California Highway Patrol officers, according to a news release. San Luis Obispo station KSBY said the two men carjacked someone at gunpoint in Anaheim on Tuesday.
The men were also suspects in a robbery at a liquor store in Buellton and a murder case in Lompoc from earlier in the week.
The chase made its way onto Highway 46 through Paso Robles and eventually into Kern County. The two men eventually got out of their car and ran into an orchard, according to KCSO.
KCSO’S SWAT team, K9 Unit and Air Unit responded to the incident and set up a perimeter around the orchard. A KCSO K9 handler spotted the two suspects running northbound from Highway 46, away from an ATV they allegedly stole from a homeowner in the area, and directed the CHP Air Unit to the location, according to KCSO.
The men tried to hide from law enforcement near a canal, but KCSO deputies found them.
They arrested one suspect, a juvenile, without incident. As they approached the second suspect, they discovered he died from a gunshot wound, according to officials.
A gun was found near the body, but it is unclear who fired the weapon or how the deceased suspect suffered the injury. KCSO said law enforcement officers did not fire their weapons during the incident. Lompoc Police told KSBY whether the suspect, later identified as a 20-year-old man, died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound is under investigation.
The juvenile was booked into Juvenile Hall on an outstanding warrant. The Coroner’s office will release the 20-year-old suspect’s name at a later time.
KCSO has opened a homicide investigation and is working with Lompoc Police Department, Anaheim Police Department, San Luis Obispo Sheriff’s Office, Santa Barbara Juvenile Probation, Santa Barbara Sheriff’s Office and the California Highway Patrol.