VISALIA, Calif. (TCD) -- A 22-year-old man was arrested on Sunday for allegedly kidnapping his ex-girlfriend at gunpoint and leading police on a car chase.
According to the Visalia Police Department, officers responded to three separate 911 calls of shots being fired around 9 a.m. at a home near Noyes and Laurel. At the scene, authorities reportedly found two cars hit by gunfire, but no one was injured.
The Visalia Police Department later identified Elijah Galaz as the suspect after further investigation and interviews. The Violent Crimes Unit reportedly learned that Galaz and the victim had a romantic past, and Galaz allegedly became angry after discovering that his ex was dating someone new. The Visalia Police Department said Galaz pulled out a gun at the new partner’s home.
The victim called police to report that Galaz was outside her home around the time that detectives obtained a warrant for his arrest. Visalia Police say Galaz kidnapped his ex and forced her into his truck at gunpoint, but they drove away before officers arrived at the victim's home.
The Visalia Police Department said detectives spotted Galaz driving a white truck at the intersection of Hall and Houston. Galaz reportedly failed to follow officers' commands as they tried initiating a traffic stop. They lost Galaz at Encina and Oak after a short pursuit. The Visalia Police Department later learned Galaz might be in Tulare, so the department called on the Tulare County Sheriff’s Office and Tulare Police Department for assistance.
According to the Visalia Police Department, Tulare police officers located Galaz’s white truck on Westminster Avenue, and when they tried to pull him over, he drove off, ultimately leading officers on a chase. He reportedly crashed into a parked car on Colorado Avenue before getting out of the car and fleeing on foot.
A Tulare Police K-9 Unit found Galaz and arrested him. He was booked into the Tulare County Pretrial Facility and was charged with shooting at an occupied dwelling, assault with a deadly weapon, kidnapping, failure to yield, and felony hit and run. Galaz’s ex endured minor injuries in the crash.