Riverside Police Department
Press Release

 

For Immediate Release

Date April 5, 2002
Contact Lieutenant John Wallace
Phone (909) 826-5836
Fax (909) 826-5699

 

Parolee-at-Large Attempts to Evade Police by Assaulting Police Officers and Hijacking Car

Riverside, CA – Today at 8:00 a.m. members of the Police and Corrections Team (P.A.C.T.) responded to the 17000 block of Mockingbird Canyon Drive to conduct a follow up investigation for a Parolee at Large, identified as Benny Ditto M/W 09-18-72. Ditto is the suspect of a police vehicle pursuit that resulted in a non-injury traffic accident on April 3, 2002. The pursuit lasted for approximately eight minutes and Ditto was not apprehended at the time.

P.A.C.T. officers arrived at the Mockingbird Canyon address and saw Ditto running from the residence towards a white El Camino, later confirmed to be a stolen vehicle from the City of Colton. Ditto entered the vehicle as officers approached. Officers attempted to contact Ditto, who was sitting in the drivers’ seat of the vehicle with the engine running. Ditto accelerated his vehicle striking two officers as he attempted to flee the area. Ditto fled the location by driving his vehicle through neighborhood yards knocking down several fences.

While driving erratically in an attempt to evade the police, the vehicle became disabled and he fled on foot. As Ditto evaded the police, he came upon a social gathering at a residence in the15800 block of Sagewood Court. Ditto lied to several women about needing to use a phone to summon help for an injured friend. Once inside the residence Ditto demanded the keys to a vehicle. After the victim refused he forcibly took the keys to a black Mercedes-Benz. Riverside Police Officers located the stolen Mercedes-Benz in the area of Gamble and Krameria.

A perimeter was quickly established in the general area of the located stolen car. A coordinated search of the area was conducted and Ditto was located and taken into custody in a rear yard of a residence in the 16500 block of Porter Street.

Both officers received minor injuries, with one being treated at a local hospital and subsequently released. The victim of the carjacking received minor injuries during the theft.

Prepared by Sgt. Guy Toussaint