One killed, 2 injured in Detroit police chase

August 13, 2009 11:27:57 AM PDT
The driver of a stolen pickup truck fleeing from police died in a fiery crash Thursday morning after colliding with a minivan, another truck and a utility pole and it then burst into flames, authorities said. The two other drivers suffered minor injuries and were treated at the scene, said Michigan State Police Trooper John Gora.

Police have not determined the identity of the driver who died, and Gora did not release the names of the other drivers.

The crash occurred shortly before 7 a.m. in Detroit after the car was taken at 6:25 a.m in suburban Taylor, Gora said.

Television stations WJBK and WDIV aired portions of the chase live. The video shows the truck driving along Michigan Avenue when it's struck by a minivan. The truck begins to flip over when it hits the other truck and a utility pole. The truck immediately explodes and flames blacken the road and nearby sidewalk.

Fire and rescue crews soon extinguish the flames.

Earl Owens, 80, was sweeping the parking lot of his Telway hamburger stand and was about 10 feet away from the crash.

"You didn't get to see much," said Owens, whose front awning and newspaper boxes were destroyed by the two trucks. "It happened so fast."

The sound of the speeding truck woke Michael Crowder, 33, who lives above an auto garage across from the Telway.

"I hopped up when I heard the 'whoosh,"' of the passing truck, Crowder said. "Then it was a 'boom' and I looked outside and saw" parts of the wreckage flying across the road.

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