Two deputies hurt, suspect accused of assaulting police dog
Kern County Sheriff's deputies from Taft were called in to assist Santa Barbara County Sheriff's deputies in a wild pursuit, foot chase and search in the Cuyama Valley Thursday night.
In the end, a torrance man was arrested but only after he fought with law enforcement officers, a Santa Barbara County police dog and tried to steal a patrol car.
The suspect, identified as Louis Lovallo, 20, was finally captured and taken to Marian Regional Medical Center in Santa Maria for medical clearance then jailed on charges of driving under the influence of drugs, felony evading a police officer, resisting arrest, attempted car jacking, attempted vehicle theft, vandalism, trespassing, assaulting a police dog and driving without a license.
According to the Santa Barbara County Sheriff, the events started with a report of a wrong way driver near New Cuyama on Highway 166.
A deputy found the vehicle near the small community and started to make a traffic stop.
The suspect at first yielded to the patrol car's flashing lights, the SBSO reported, but then accelerated and drove recklessly in an attempt to evade the deputy.
A pursuit ensued until the suspect turned off the highway and into the farm fields.
The suspect's vehicle became disabled several times as he fled through the field, and he finally abandoned it and fled on foot this time a K-9 deputy and the two deputies from Taft as well as a CHP officer joined in the chase and search.
At one point, the Sheriff said, Lovallo tried to break into a patrol car and steal it.
He was finally found hiding in a nearby field and "violently resisted arrest," and assaulted the dog according to the SBSO, before he was taken into custody.
Two deputies suffered minor injuries.
While all this was going on, Lovallo's vehicle caught fire.