One man was arrested after a high-speed chase from Moraga to Lafayette early Monday, police from throughout Lamorinda teaming up to finally bring the fleeing driver to a halt.
Moraga Police Lt. Brian South said John Downs, 26, of Oakland was taken into custody at 1:27 a.m. at Mt. Diablo Boulevard and Dewing Avenue. Police searched the pursuit route along Canyon and Moraga roads and recovered a .40 caliber handgun at Canyon and Sanders, police said, after Downs was observed throwing the weapon from his vehicle.
Ammunition for the gun was also reportedly found in the car during a search.
Apparently a Moraga patrol officer had stopped Downs’ car on Canyon Road and was interviewing him when he bolted, driving off at high speed and turning off the lights on his vehicle in an attempt to throw off pursuers.
Downs raced for Lafayette along Moraga Road, reaching speeds upwards of 80 mph, and turning onto Mt. Diablo Boulevard before police were able to stop his car at Dewing and take him into custody.
Downs faces preliminary charges of Felon in Possession of a Firearm and felony Evading, South said.
Some locals may remember Downs’ alleged participation in a July 25, 2020 robbery in Orinda, in which a local man was surprised by three thieves in his driveway and had his watch taken.