|Defendant||Charges||Maximum Sentence||Court Date|
|Antonio Padilla Jr., 37, Palm Desert||Charged today with the following counts:
Prior Serious Felony Convictions
|120 years to life in state prison||Arraignment
Date and time to be determined
Department CJ-1, Central Jail, Santa Ana
Circumstances of the Case
- On Feb. 18, 2018, a Garden Grove Police Department (GGPD) motorcycle patrol officer pulled Padilla over for speeding.
- While the officer wrote the citation, Padilla is accused of starting his truck and accelerating toward the officer, who was able to leap out of the way.
- On Feb. 26, 2018, GGPD detectives located Padilla in a vehicle Santa Ana and requested assistance from the Santa Ana Police Department (SAPD).
- Padilla is accused of initiating a pursuit down surface streets, driving in excess of 60 miles per hour while running stop signs and traffic lights.
- The defendant is accused of leading officers on a high-speed pursuit through Irvine, where he is further accused of fleeing his vehicle before carjacking and assaulting a young woman and her brother by dragging the victim out of her SUV.
- Padilla is accused of crashing the stolen vehicle into a curb and fleeing on foot.
- SAPD deployed K9 Puskas, who apprehended the defendant.
- As Puskas held on to Padilla, the defendant is accused of striking the K9 repeatedly. Puskas retained control of the defendant until officers took him into custody.
- Puskas was transported to a local hospital where he underwent surgery. The K9 sustained severe injuries, including the loss of most of his upper and lower teeth, and is currently in recovery.
Prosecutor: Senior Deputy District Attorney Paul Chrisopoulos, Special Prosecutions Unit
Orange County District Attorney / Case # 18HF0329/ February 28, 2018