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Updated Dec 13, 2013 - 10:02 am

Carjacking suspect jumps off freeway in Tempe, survives

A suspect jumped off the bridge on the Loop 202 near the McClintock Drive ramp in Tempe. (KTAR Photo/Jim Cross)

PHOENIX -- Tempe Police said a carjacking and robbery suspect may not survive after he jumped off a bridge early Friday morning to avoid capture.

Sgt. Michael Pooley said the suspect pretended to be a security guard and used a Taser to steal a car from a woman at Tempe Marketplace on Thursday night.

Maricopa County Sheriff's Office said the man, described as in his 50s or 60s, then robbed an adult bookstore in Mesa before disappearing again.

The car was seen Friday morning and the Department of Public Safety gave chase on westbound Loop 202. The chase, during which the suspect was driving more 100 mph, ended near the McClintock Drive ramp.

"The suspect immediately got out of the car, ran and jumped over the bridge and I don't think he realized what he was jumping over," Pooley said. "It's about an eight-story drop" into a empty water-retention area, where it took crews an hour to get him out and on the way to the hospital.

Police closed the right three lanes Loop 202 west at McClintock, along with the ramp from Loop 101 Pima south to Loop 202 west.

About the Author

Position: Senior News Reporter. Started with KTAR July 4, 1999.

Favorite spots in Arizona: Pinetop-Lakeside, Alpine, Greer.

Have covered some of the biggest stories in Arizona including nine of the top 10 largest wildfires in state history. The Wallow Fire in 2011 became the largest fire in state history. Rodeo-Chediski Fire in June 2002, which is the second largest fire in Arizona. Covered the Yarnell Hill Tragedy in June 2013 that left 19 Granite Mountain Hotshots dead.

Favorite movies: True Grit, both 1969 John Wayne classic and the remake with Jeff Bridges and Lonesome Dove.

Sports Teams: Washington State University Cougars, Texas Longhorns, The University of Montana Grizzlies.


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