OVIEDO, Fla. -- Four Pinellas County teens are facing charges after gunning a car 80 miles per hour down a busy road and crashing into three vehicles in Oviedo, just outside Orlando.
One of the 18-year-olds was just arrested 2 days earlier in St Petersburg for shoplifting. The other, also 18, was arrested a month ago for shoplifting at the Dillard’s Store at Tyrone Square Mall. This time, police say the teens put themselves and others in extreme danger.
Cell phone video shows the end of a high speed chase in Oviedo, Florida and the driver, 18-year-old Daquez Warren of Largo, sprawled out on the ground. It was a terrifying scene for shoppers outside the busy Oviedo shopping mall on Tuesday night.
Javier Tapining witnessed the whole ordeal. "When a car flares up like that and a cop comes running with a gun drawn, that's intense."
Oviedo police tell us they believe the four teens, one 18-year-old man from Largo and two 18-year-old women and a 17-year-old woman from St Pete, specifically drove to the mall to shoplift.
They got spooked by a mall security guard and took off, going 80 miles per hour, running over two cars and an unmarked police car.
Oviedo police say the teens also had a loaded gun in the car. The car wasn’t reported stolen, but it still worries local leaders who are trying to find a solution to teens creating chaos behind the wheel.
Dewey Caruthers, who is researching the teen crime epidemic explains, "This is a very scary problem that the average person does not understand how serious it is. According to victim reports you hear of cars just coming out of nowhere."
This is a problem that’s putting innocent lives in danger and giving local experts more reason to find a solution— fast.
“To address what we're going to do for these kids not to get involved in this in the first place,” Caruthers added.
Police officers tell ABC Action News it’s a miracle nobody was hurt in this high speed chase.