MIRAMAR (CBS4) - The Florida Highway Patrol says they arrested a Hialeah man who stole a taxicab over the weekend and led police from several cities on a two county chase that reached speeds of more than 100 miles per hour and caused at least three accidents.
FHP says Lazaro Castellon will face numerous charges including grand theft auto and aggravated assault on a police officer. FHP says they also found drugs on the suspect.
Investigators say with all the mayhem this guy caused, it is a miracle no one was hurt.
“At this time we don’t know exactly what was on his mind,” said Trooper Joe Sanchez.
Investigators say the cab was reported stolen over the weekend from a garage in Northwest Miami Dade. Sweetwater Police spotted the cab Tuesday and tried to pull it over. But police say Castellon took off, causing at least three accidents — there were dents all along the driver’s side of the cab. One of the accidents — investigators say occurred when Castellon hit a Sweetwater detective.
As the chase wound into Miramar, a security guard says the taxicab pulled into a gated community.
“He came and said, ‘Let me through, Let me through!’ said the security guard. “As I moved towards the button to make the u-turn, he slammed on the gas, tore the arm off and sped away.”
A short time later, the Florida Highway Patrol says Castellon drove into the back of a shopping plaza near a department store and bailed out running.
“The trooper was able to run behind him, tase him,” said Sanchez. “The individual ripped out the tase and continued to run until the trooper tackled him and made the arrest.”
The whole thing unfolded just a short distance from a daycare that went on lockdown and left parents scrambling to find their kids.
“You get scared,” said parent Naomi Jestlu. “You don’t know what to do.”
FHP says there were no injuries and Castellon is headed to jail.
“It’s a joke to him,” said Sanchez. “It’s not a joke to us and it’s not a joke to so many people whose lives were put in danger to apprehend this individual.”
CBS4 conducted a court records check and found that Castellon has been arrested before for grand theft auto and drug possession.