Fortuna Police Dept. Press Release:
On November 6, 2012 at 3:40 PM, a Fortuna Police Officer was driving south on US 101 near the Hookton Road exit, When he observed a new Dodge Durango driving erratically, south on US 101.
The officer fell in behind the vehicle and paced the vehicle at speeds above 80 MPH. The officer activated the patrol unit emergency lights and driver failed to yield. The driver sped up to speeds over 100 MPH. At this time the FPD Was advised that the vehicle had just been stolen from the Lithia lot in Eureka.
The pursuit continued south on US 101 and additional Fortuna police units joined the pursuit. Two Rio Dell units joined the pursuit as the Vehicle passed Rio Dell.
As the suspect vehicle passed Shívely Rd., the driver slowed and attempted a U turn on the freeway. As the suspect driver made his erratic turn he collided into a Fortuna Police patrol car, causing damage to the patrol car’,s front bumper, headlight and right front quarter panel.
The driver turned onto Shively Road at a high rate of speed. The driver attempted to negotiate hard right corner and lost control of the vehicle due to a high rate of speed. The vehicle collided into a ditch and steep embankment, causing total damage to the Vehicle. The suspect was able to get out of the vehicle and began running Yup the steep embankment. Several officers gave foot chase. ‘The subject was ordered to stop and continued to run. An officer discharged his Taser at the suspect, identified as Paul Force, age 39 of Redway, stopping Force and causing him to roll down the embankment. Force attempted to flee again and a 2nd officer discharged his Taser at Force, causing Force to fall and ultimately being taken into custody.
Force was taken to Redwood Memorial Hospital for treatment of minor injuries and then booked into the County Jail for Auto Theft, Felony YPursuit and Resísting Arrest. A sustained a minor injury to his leg during the foot pursuit of Force.