A vehicle theft led Highland Police officers on a chase up Palm Avenue on Friday morning, July 5, resulting in the death of his female passenger. San Bernardino Sheriff's Department reports that at about 6:37 a.m., a deputy from San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department Central Station attempted a traffic stop on a stolen BMW sedan. The suspect, Timothy Johnston had stolen a white BMW sedan and had fled from police conducting a traffic stop after determining the sedan had been stolen.
Johnston would sideswipe a dark gray Toyota pickup truck at the intersection of Palm and Nona, before sliding into a telephone pole and landing upside-down on the front lawn of Side Effects II beauty salon. He then fled the vehicle on foot and hid in a nearby neighborhood before being taken into custody without incident.
The suspect and his passenger were taken to a local hospital. The passenger succumbed to their injuries. The occupants of the pickup truck were not injured.
The incident shut down Palm Avenue between the I-210 overpass and Pacific Street until Friday afternoon as officers from the Highland Police and the San Bernardino Sheriff's Department investigated.
Johnston has been booked into the Central Detention Center on charges of Vehicular Manslaughter with Gross Negligence, Evading a Peace Officer with no Regard for Public Safety, Possession of a Stolen Vehicle, Vehicle Theft, Burglary and an unrelated no-bail warrant for vehicle theft.
The names of those involved have not been released, pending investigation and notification of next of kin of the deceased.
Anyone who witnessed or has information about this incident is urged to contact Deputy E. Urban or Deputy T. Lee at (909) 387-3545.
This is a developing story. Further details will be provided as they become available.