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High-speed chase ends with two arrests

September 16, 2009|By Christopher Cadelago

CITY CENTER — Burbank Police arrested two residents after they led officers on high-speed car chase Tuesday evening and slammed into an unsuspecting motorist, authorities said.

The driver, Suren Ginian, 20, was arrested and booked on charges of assault with a deadly weapon, hit and run, resisting arrest and evading police. He is being held without bail at the Burbank jail. Passenger Francisco Juarez, 23, was arrested and booked for resisting arrest. His bail was set at $10,000.

Both men are expected to appear in a Burbank courtroom Thursday.

A third male suspect remains at large, Burbank Police Sgt. Robert Quesada said.

Neither Ginian nor Juarez had warrants for their arrest, police said. The case is being investigated.

Officers responded to 1111 E. Providencia Ave. about 8 p.m. after a neighbor complained about a group of men loitering and possibly drinking alcohol.

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As officers attempted to make contact, Ginian sped off west from the intersection of Providencia Avenue and South Sunset Canyon Drive in a black Mercedes-Benz. The car, which is registered to the driver, continued on Providencia Avenue, nearly colliding head-on with a patrol car, police said.

“The driver was headed right at him,” Quesada said. “The officer had to swerve out of the way to avoid being hit head-on.”

During the chase through residential streets, Ginian topped speeds of 70 mph and blew a stop sign at South Bel Aire Drive before slamming into a Toyota Camry in the intersection of Providencia Avenue and South Kenneth Road.

Burbank residents Ghazarian Varaga, 21, and Arman Ayvazyan, 19, were not injured in the crash, police said.

The three suspects then fled the scene on foot as officers called for support and set up a perimeter, Quesada said.

One suspect was found hiding in the 700 block of East Olive Avenue on the street gutter; another was sitting down at 718 E. Olive Ave. on a pile of debris. Both suspects were taken into custody around 8:30 p.m., police said.

Officers searched the Mercedes-Benz and found an open bottle of rum and leafy brown substance believed to be marijuana.

Detectives are expected to rely on footage of nearby businesses and question the men in custody for information leading to the third suspect.

“The whole chase would have lasted longer had they not crashed into somebody,” Quesada said. “There were opportunities there where somebody — possibly crossing the street, walking their dog — could have been badly hurt. We’re just thankful nothing like that happened.”

The high-speed chase occurred at the same time Democratic Assemblyman Paul Krekorian hosted a public forum on speeding and traffic safety with command staffs of the Glendale and Burbank Police departments.


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