Horrifying police chase video has captured a thief driving a stolen California cop car jumping out at around 46 mph, killing him.
California Highway Patrol officers were initially called to reports of a reckless driver on Highway 5 near Castaic just before noon on Tuesday.
The suspect, who has yet to be identified, then crashed his own Toyota Corolla into another vehicle — and somehow jumped into a responding police cruiser and raced away.
A Fox 11 news chopper followed the 90-minute chase, with one of the stolen cruiser’s tires popping off at around 77 mph after running over police spike strips.
While still going around 46mph, the stolen car’s door suddenly opened — and the suspect leaped out onto the road.
As his feet touched the ground, he immediately slammed backward — with the local station freezing the moment his head slammed into the highway.
Despite officers attempting “life-saving measures” for the driver’s “major injuries,” he was pronounced dead at a nearby hospital, the CHP said.
After the fatal leap, the abandoned cop car was seen knocking down a utility pole before coming to a stop in a ditch on the side of the road.
The highway patrol is now investigating how the late suspect was able to drive off with the responding officer’s car.
“I do not know what happened in this circumstance, but it is standard procedure” for cruisers to be locked when left running in such cases, CHP Officer Alec Pereyda told Fox 11 at the scene.
A major concern would be suspects being able to access firearms inside the vehicles, the force’s rep said.
“Luckily, they did not become unlocked in the patrol vehicle, and he was not able to gain access to those,” Pereyda said.