Pursuit leads to DUI arrest after driver crashes into tree in Merced, police say

A 30-year old man was arrested after leading police officers on a high-speed pursuit before crashing into a tree in Applegate Park in Merced on Tuesday night, according to police.

An officer observed a BMW traveling at 80 mph and attempted to stop the vehicle in the 2500 block of G Street at 7:45 p.m., according to a news release.

When the officer attempted to stop the vehicle, the driver sped up and a pursuit ensued. The driver, later identified as Joseph Gonzalez, 30, ran several stop signs in a residential neighborhood before crashing into a tree in Applegate Park.

Gonzalez ran from the vehicle but was apprehended after he ran through Bear Creek.

Officers recovered two loaded firearms in Gonzalez’s vehicle. He was also determined to be under the influence of alcohol.

Gonzalez was later taken to the Merced County jail and charged with reckless driving, felony evading, DUI, and various weapons charges.

Merced police are asking anyone with any information regarding this crime to contact Officer Drees at 209-388-7809 or by email at dreesd@cityofmerced.org.