Petaluma man arrested after pursuit, crash

SANTA ROSA, Calif. (KTVU & Wires) -- Police arrested a Petaluma man after he crashed into a fire hydrant and a stop sign and drove over several pedestrian safety barriers while trying to evade police in downtown Santa Rosa on Saturday evening, police said.

Police said Nirut Honey Gowing, 32, was arrested on suspicion of reckless driving, car theft, possession of a stolen vehicle with an enhancement for a prior stolen vehicle conviction, possession of burglary tools and possession of a concealed dagger.

An officer on patrol around 5:30 p.m. saw a car with a broken brake light traveling north on Railroad Street near Third Street, according to police.

Police said the officer tried to pull over the car but the driver, later identified as Gowing, failed to yield and sped away instead, continuing north onto Wilson Street near Fourth Street.

Dispatchers determined the car was reported stolen Thursday, police said.

Gowing circled back through a parking lot in Railroad Square, where police said he tried to turn onto Fourth Street.

He allegedly lost control of the car and hit a fire hydrant, a stop sign, and several pedestrian safety barriers before continuing east in the westbound lane of Fourth Street, police said.

Gowing repeatedly opened the driver's side door of the car in what police said was an apparent attempt to jump out of the moving vehicle.

Police said Gowing eventually lost control of the car and crashed into several pedestrian safety barriers on the corner of Fourth and Davis streets.

Gowing then got out of the car and tried to escape on foot, but officers were able to locate him on Wilson and Third streets, where they detained him. A search of Gowing's person revealed a dagger in his pants pockets, police said.

Gowing was booked into the county jail. Police said he also had an outstanding felony warrant.