A driver being followed by police in an unmarked patrol car hit several cars and left a Mercedes running in the middle of a busy New York City intersection, allowing it to roll onto a sidewalk as he fled on foot, police say.
Officers in an unmarked police vehicle were following the black Mercedes east on 68th Street on the Upper West Side when the Mercedes hit some vehicles, including a yellow cab at the corner of Columbus, according to police.
The driver stopped the car the in the middle of the intersection, got out and began running away, police said.
The Mercedes, which had been left running, rolled onto the sidewalk on its own, ending up in front of Il Violino restaurant, witnesses and police said.
The car never crashed into the restaurant and no one was hit by the rolling vehicle, police said.
Officers were able to capture the driver on foot and identified him as 27-year-old Lewis Espinal. He was charged with leaving the scene of an accident with injuries, fleeing officers in a motor vehicle, criminal possession of a weapon, criminal possession of a controlled substance, false impersonation and running a red light. It was not immediately known if Espinal had an attorney.
There may have been other occupants inside the car, who are also being sought by police.
The driver of the taxi hit by the suspect said he was alone in the taxi and wasn't hurt aside from a sore back.
Another witness described the incident as "scary" and a "close call."