A hit-and-run crash Wednesday morning in Napa's Westwood neighborhood resulted in the arrest of a juvenile driver and the brief lockdown of three nearby schools during a search for the suspect, according to police.
The suspect, whose name was withheld because of his age, was detained on suspicion of robbery, criminal conspiracy and leaving the scene of an accident, police Sgt. Thomas Keener said in a news release.
At 7:52 a.m., a Napa Police officer was conducting traffic enforcement near the Napa Valley Language Academy on Kilburn Avenue when a Honda Accord sped through the area, according to Keener. The officer stopped the Honda’s driver near NVLA and directed him to park nearby, but the motorist instead fled at high speed, Keener said.
The officer followed the Honda, which crashed into a parked vehicle a short distance away on Bryan Avenue, Keener said. The driver, who was alone in the Accord, then fled on foot and climbed a fence into the yard of a nearby home, according to Keener, who said nearby residents saw the suspect carrying a handgun as he headed for Kilburn Avenue.
Napa Police officers and Napa County sheriff’s deputies were called to the scene and set up a cordon in the Kilburn Avenue area. In addition, NVLA and West Park Elementary School were placed under lockdown, according to Cass Caulfield, spokesperson for the Napa Valley Unified School District. A private school, Veritas Christian Academy on First Street, also went under lockdown during the incident, according to police.
Officers searching the neighborhood found and detained the suspect at 8:27 a.m. at Bryan and Bellevue avenues, Keener said. The driver was booked into the Napa County juvenile hall.
All three school lockdowns were lifted after the arrest.
The police investigation has identified the motorist as a suspect in an Aug. 22 robbery near Harvest Middle School in south Napa, according to Keener.
Officers searched the area for the gun the suspect was observed running with but were unable to find it as of Wednesday afternoon, according to police. Residents who discover a firearm in the area are asked not to touch it and instead call Napa Police immediately.
Officers with the police department’s Youth Services Bureau are investigating the incident.
Anyone with information on the Westwood incident is asked to contact Officer Nick Toscani at email@example.com, or Officer Jeff Hansen at firstname.lastname@example.org. Calls may be placed to Napa Police at 707-257-9223.
An anonymous tip can also be sent to police by texting the word 707NPD and the tip information to 847411 (tip411).
Register features editor Sasha Paulsen contributed to this report.
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